Americans are exhausted with gun violence. They expect gun owners to exercise their ownership in a responsible and safe manner. That’s why the great majority, including a majority of gun owners, support common sense safety measures such as universal background checks and red flag laws. In recent years, too many communities have suffered the tragedy of mass shootings by people that should never have had a gun. We must do more to prevent high-powered, military-style firearms from getting into the hands of people who shouldn’t have them. It's high time that Congress stood up to the gun lobby and took steps to stem the terrible tide of gun violence in our country.
Congressman Sarbanes voted for the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, which became law in June 2022. This legislation will save lives by strengthening background checks from individuals aged 18 - 21, closing a loophole to keep guns away from domestic abusers, creating a new federal offense for gun trafficking, supporting the implementation of state red flag laws and expanding mental health services. While this legislation represents an historic step to curbing gun violence, Congressman Sarbanes has supported H.R. 8 - legislation to require background checks for all firearm purchases, as well as additional reforms like raising the legal age to purchase a semiautomatic rifle, banning civilian use of high-capacity magazines and banning assault weapons.
In order to fully address gun violence, we must also treat it as the public health crisis it is. Congressman Sarbanes voted for legislation to lift the federal ban on gun violence research at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in 2018 and consistently supports programs that support the law enforcement, crisis intervention teams and community organizations that work to prevent and respond to violence.
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Congressman John Sarbanes has received the Moms Demand Action Gun Sense Candidate Distinction.