Congressman Tim Bishop issued a statement on Wednesday in response to the White House plan to reduce gun violence. President Barack Obama‘s speech on Wednesday, January 16, urged Congress to pass a comprehensive package of measures, including universal background checks and a federal ban on assault weapons, high-capacity magazines (holding more than 10 bullets) and armor piercing “cop-killer” bullets. Vice President Joe Biden, who joined the President when he addressed the nation, said they would tour the country to make the case for gun control laws.
Scroll down to watch Obama’s speech below.
The New York State Legislature was the first state in the union to pass its own sweeping set of gun-control measures on Tuesday. Already the state with the toughest gun laws before the new legislation, New York has now reinstated the 1994 ban on assault weapons, it has reduced the allowable number of bullets in a magazine from 10 to seven, and imposed stronger background checks for the mentally ill, including a requirement to report potentially harmful behavior.
Congressman Bishop, who supports the measures, shared his thought on Wednesday.
“Confronting the epidemic of gun violence in America is vitally important, and we have a responsibility to make all reasonable efforts to ensure guns are used safely and stay out of the hands of those who would use them to harm others. I applaud the President‘s leadership in seeking input from all stakeholders and producing a comprehensive set of proposals encompassing the many aspects of this complex problem.
I support the President‘s call—echoed by the law enforcement community—for a renewal of the ban on military-style assault weapons and new bans on high-capacity ammunition magazines and armor-piercing bullets. I also support closing the many loopholes that undermine the federal background check system intended to prevent potentially dangerous individuals from purchasing guns.
I also strongly support the President‘s proposals on school safety, especially ensuring every school has a comprehensive emergency management plan. His proposals to improve access to mental health services, with a special focus on young people, are also vitally important.
Congress should debate the President‘s proposals and hold up-or-down votes on them, either individually or as a package. For too long, the powerful gun lobby has scuttled common-sense safety and violence reduction proposals by exerting their influence in closed-door meetings. Doing nothing is unacceptable in the wake of Sandy Hook and the countless other incidents of gun-facilitated violence in America.”