Gabrielle Giffords urges support for universal background checks

 

Posted by AzBlueMeanie:

Several public opinion polls that have polled on the question of universal background checks for gun purchases have demonstrated near "universal" support for such background checks. A Quinipiac University Poll (January 30-February 4): By a margin of 92 percent to 7 percent, voters
supported background checks; In households with a gun, 91 percent were in favor, while 8
percent were opposed.

Similarly, a CBS News/New York Times poll (January 11-15): By a margin of 92 percent to 7 percent, voters
supported background checks; 89 percent of Republicans and 93 percent of Democrats and independents
were in favor, as well as 93 percent of gun households and 85 percent of
those living in a household with a member of the National Rifle
Association.

A CNN poll (January 14-16): By a margin of 94 percent to 6 percent, voters
supported background checks.

This common sense solution should be a "no brainer" for Congress.

The American people demand universal background checks for all gun purchases. The NRA Leadership Is Virtually Alone In Opposition To Expanding Background Checks For Every Gun Sale. Well, not entirely. Arizona's freshman Senator Jeff Flake says he is opposed to universal background checks for all gun purchases. Arizona gun background checks urged: In a written statement, a spokeswoman said Flake opposes universal
background checks, but “believes in broader background checks like
making sure mental-health records are more efficiently integrated into
the National Instant Criminal Background Check System. He’s working on
legislation to strengthen the reporting process of mental-health records
so that those who shouldn’t have access to guns are barred from
purchasing them.”

Which raises the ire of Sen. Flake's close friend, former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, the victim of an assasination attempt in a mass shooting by a deranged gunman. Giffords held a press conference today to urge Sen. Flake, and the rest of Arizona's congressional delegation, to support universal background checks for all gun purchases. Giffords urges support for background checks:

Former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and other victims returned
Wednesday to the Safeway where they were shot during a political event
two years ago, coming together to urge Arizona’s senators to support
universal background checks for gun purchases and transfers.

Many of the victims of the 2011 shooting spoke during the Wednesday
morning news conference at the grocery store just north of Tucson. The
speakers stood just 20 feet from where Giffords was addressing
constituents on the morning of Jan. 8, 2011, when gunman Jared Lee
Loughner opened fire, killing six and injuring 13.

Giffords’ husband, retired astronaut Mark Kelly, and other shooting
victims expressed their support for legislation requiring universal
background checks that the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee is scheduled
to take up Thursday.

All urged Arizona Sens. John McCain and Jeff Flake to support the
bill, and asked the public to contact their congressmen with the same
request. Television ads urging the same action have also begun airing in
Arizona.

Giffords made a short statement directed to Flake and McCain: "Be bold. Be courageous. Please support background checks.”

The former lawmaker also repeated what she tells Kelly before going to therapy each day: “Fight, fight, fight.”

Kelly, speaking on behalf of his wife, explained why they consider the legislation important.

“It’s clear that the (Tucson) shooter had a history of mental
illness, but he had access to a gun,” he said. “It is clear that this
legislation could do a very common sense thing — to make it more
difficult for criminals and the mentally ill to have access to a
firearm.”

* * *

On Wednesday, Giffords hugged victims after they spoke in favor of
the legislation, smiling and nodding throughout the press conference.
Kelly held her hand and arm, keeping her upright as Giffords struggled
at times to keep her balance.

“We know that background checks work,” said Pam Simon, former
Giffords staffer and shooting victim. She echoed Kelly’s message that
supporting the bill is a “common sense” first step.

Americans For Responsible Solutions, the organization founded by former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and her husband, Mark Kelly to combat gun violence, posted this video asking voters to contact Sen. Flake.

Call 1-888-284-5479 and tell your Senator that you are one of the over 90% of Americans who support universal background checks for all gun purchases.

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