Apr 5, 2013

Senate to Consider Gun Bill Monday

Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) has announced that on Monday, when Senators return to Washington, he plans to bring gun violence legislation to the Senate floor.  The exact contours of the package are still unknown, so it is important that we renew our call for meaningful action.  On Tuesday April 9th, I urge you to join us for the second FaithsCalling mobilizationWith Senate action imminent, it is crucial that you call in support of comprehensive reform and encourage your friends, family, and colleagues to do so as well. 

This week, the National Rifle Association released their proposal to increase school safety: arm school personnel.  We have advocated a different approach, one that includes:

  • Limit to access to the most dangerous weapons (including, but not limited to assault weapons) and high capacity ammunition magazines.
  • Appropriate waiting period, volume sales restrictions, and universal background checks for all firearms sales, including criminal and mental health reviews.
  • Diligent enforcement of firearm regulations and expansion of federal laws prohibiting gun trafficking and straw purchases.
  • Robust efforts to ensure that every person in need has access to quality mental health care, including fully funding our mental health system and requiring true parity between mental and physical health care.
  • National conversation about violence in media and the role of civil society organizations to confront the proliferation of violent images.

The package approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee  is almost certain to be filibustered, and already, Leader Reid has said that the ban on assault weapons will not be included, but can be offered as an amendment – an extra hurdle that will make its adoption unlikely. Now, an alternative bill that excludes background checks or bans on military style weapons and high capacity ammunition is being written by Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA).

Next week will be an important week. I urge you to call your Senators on the second interfaith call-in day on Tuesday, April 9th.  Join us once again to make a difference by letting Congress know we support a comprehensive approach to ending gun violence.

And, as always, be sure to stay updated on our facebook page.