Six months ago, our nation watched in horror as details from the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut unfolded. On that tragic day, twenty children and six school staff members lost their lives in the second deadliest mass shooting by an individual in American history. The shooting prompted renewed calls for reasonable gun control legislation to address the issue of gun violence in America. Sadly, six months later, little has changed.
In the months since the events at Newtown, thousands of Americans have lost their lives from gun violence. More than 30,000 gun deaths will be reported this year. It is clear from these staggering figures that something must be done. Recent mass shootings at Newtown, Oak Creek, Aurora, Carson City, Grand Rapids, Samson, and Virginia Tech only underscore the need to address gun violence with smart and effective gun control measures.
As a Member of Congress, I am proud to co-sponsor gun control measures that will keep guns out of the hands of criminals and our communities safer. I have co-sponsored H.R. 93, the Fire Sale Loophole Closing Act, that addresses the "fire-sale loophole," in which gun dealers whose licenses have been revoked are able to convert their inventories of guns into personal collections and then sell the firearms in unregulated sales. I am also a cosponsor of H.R. 138, the Large Capacity Ammunition Feeding Device Act, banning new sales of gun magazines holding more than 10 bullets, and H.R.227, the Buyback Our Safety Act as well as H.R. 793, the Firearm Safety and Buyback Grant Act of 2013, legislation that will help get unwanted guns safely off the street. These proposals will help keep our cities and communities safe, while respecting the rights of gun-owners.
The hearts of those who lost loved ones from gun violence will never be whole again. On this solemn anniversary, I pledge to continue to fight for reasonable gun control reforms, new crime prevention, tougher sentencing, and reforms in mental health care, that will help to stem the flow of weapons and reduce the number of annual gun related deaths.