Statement from Third Way Vice President Lanae Erickson Hatalsky on the Senate’s Failure to Pass Background Checks for Gun Sales
June 20, 2016
Tonight, only a week after the deadliest mass shooting and most devastating hate crime in our nation’s history, the Senate voted to do…absolutely nothing in response. Which is exactly the same thing they did after 20 first graders and six educators were massacred in their school at Sandy Hook Elementary, after nine people were shot to death in a South Carolina church, after 14 people were gunned down in San Bernardino, and after one of their own—Rep. Gabby Giffords (D-AZ)—was shot in the head and nearly died while doing her job. There have been more than 1,000 mass shootings in our country since Sandy Hook, and every year more than 33,000 Americans die at the end of gun. That’s 90 people every single day. What, exactly, is it going to take for a majority of Congress to stand up and say enough is enough? We shouldn’t need even one more death to motivate us to pass common sense, reasonable gun laws that both uphold the Second Amendment and keep guns out of the hands of criminals, terrorists, and others who seek to inflict mass violence on our citizens. Congress must find the political courage to act to protect our communities. If their failed vote tonight is their best attempt, then those who opposed background checks for gun sales have sent a clear message that 49 innocent people, mostly LGBT people and people of color who were targeted for death because of who they are, have died in vain.
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