WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), joined by U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal, Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (CA-12), U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.), and U.S. Representatives Mike Thompson (CA-05), Ted Deutch (FL-22), and Lucy McBath (GA-06), on Thursday at a press event in front of the U.S. Capitol called on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to pass universal background checks legislation. It’s been over 100 days since the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Bipartisan Background Checks (H.R. 8), legislation to expand federal background checks to all gun sales. The members were joined by former U.S. Representative Gabby Giffords and representatives from gun violence prevention organizations. During his remarks, Murphy called attention to the approximately 11,400 people who have died from gun violence since the House passed H.R. 8 and pressed Republicans in the Senate to bring the commonsense gun violence prevention legislation up for a vote.
In January 2019, Murphy led 40 Senators in introducing the Senate counterpart bill. 97% of Americans support comprehensive background checks and research indicates that as many as a quarter of all gun sales in the United States may occur without a background check.
“States that have passed universal background checks have less gun homicides. States that have universal background checks have less domestic violence homicides. States that pass universal background checks have less suicides. It is a proven and impactful intervention,” said Murphy. “We are here today to make clear what the cost of inaction is. Tens of thousands of Americans dying, many of them completely needlessly, and we are here to plead and beg our colleagues in the United States Senate to bring H.R. 8 up for a vote.”
Murphy added, “What is so totally, completely unacceptable is, in the face of this slaughter, not even trying to solve it. Not even attempting to find a pathway to get to the fifty or sixty votes we need in the Senate to pass a measure that is supported by 97 percent of Americans.”
You can view the press conference in its entirety here.