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News Feb 4, 2014 - 5:36:32 AM

Reps. Esty, Thompson, and Lowenthal Put Gun Violence Issue at Forefront

By Representative Elizabeth Esty

On the heels of SOTU, Members call for renewed congressional action

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – Representatives Elizabeth Esty (CT-5), Mike Thompson (CA-5), and Alan Lowenthal (CA-47) last week introduced a House Resolution that calls for renewed congressional action in dealing with the ever-growing impact of gun violence on American communities. The legislation is endorsed by the Newtown Action Alliance.

The House Resolution expresses that gun violence is a public health issue and commits Congress to enacting by the end of the 113th Congress commonsense steps to curb gun violence without hindering Americans’ Second Amendment rights.

The House Resolution is as follows:

“Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that gun violence is a public health issue and Congress should enact by the end of the 113th Congress comprehensive Federal legislation that protects the Second Amendment and keeps communities safe and healthy, including expanding enforceable background checks for all commercial gun sales, improving the mental health system in the United States, and making gun trafficking and straw purchasing a Federal crime.”

“It’s simply shameful that Congress has not acted to pass commonsense gun violence prevention reform despite the overwhelming support of the American people,” Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty said. “More than a year after the horrific murders at Sandy Hook Elementary School in my district, the price of political inaction is unacceptable and inexcusable.”

“When more than 30 people a day are killed by someone using a gun, inaction isn’t an option,” Congressman Mike Thompson said. “Congress needs to act and we need to start by passing my bipartisan bill to expand comprehensive and enforceable background checks to all commercial firearm sales so that criminals, terrorists and domestic abusers can’t bypass the background system by going to a gun show or buying a gun online with no questions asked.”

“There is no need to lay out another statistic about the prevalence of gun violence. It is, as we are seeing on the news on almost a weekly basis, a public health epidemic,” Congressman Alan Lowenthal said. “The only thing more heartbreaking than the damage gun violence has done to families across our nation is the fact that Congress has failed to do anything meaningful about it.”

Of the dozens of bills introduced in the 113th Congress that aimed to reduce the prevalence of gun violence, none of them has been brought to the House Floor for a vote.

Rep. Esty serves as Vice Chair of the Gun Violence Prevention Task Force, chaired and established by Rep. Thompson in December 2012. Rep. Esty represents the town of Newtown, CT, which experienced the horrific massacre of 20 children and 6 adults at Sandy Hook Elementary on December 14, 2012.

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