Washington, DC—During a press conference today at the White House, President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden announced a broad-ranging package of gun policy recommendations that, if implemented, would save countless American lives in the years ahead.
“I was honored to attend today’s event at the White House,” said Coalition to Stop Gun Violence (CSGV) executive director Josh Horwitz. “The President’s announcement was unbelievably meaningful to Americans who have advocated against reckless gun laws; and particularly to those who have personally suffered because of them, including members of our own staff. The policy formation process directed by Vice President Joe Biden was rigorous and professional from the get-go and something we can all take great pride in.”
The report presented by the President urges the U.S. Congress to pass legislation to require universal background checks on all gun sales, renew the ban on assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines, and eliminate restrictions on federal research into gun violence, among other recommendations. It also includes 23 important executive actions to reduce gun violence that the Obama administration will implement immediately.
“These are reforms that should have been law in this country decades ago,” said CSGV Legislative Assistant Christian Heyne, who lost his mother in a gun-related homicide. “In the wake of the gruesome mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary, we now have the opportunity to make sure future generations of Americans will not have to endure similar horrors.”
Along with partners in the gun violence prevention movement, the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence will now mobilize grassroots activists across the country to support the White House’s recommendations.
“The response to Newtown is like nothing we have ever seen,” said Heyne. “We have been stretched beyond capacity by the flood of phone calls, emails, and social media messages we are receiving daily. Americans are asking what they can do to make a difference. We now know exactly what to tell them. ‘Contact your Members of Congress—not once, but repeatedly—and tell them you want to see the White House’s recommendations acted on immediately.’ As the President said today, ‘This time must be different.’”
“We were critical of this President for not doing enough in his first term to address America’s epidemic of gun violence,” said Horwitz. “Today, those concerns were laid to rest.”
The Coalition to Stop Gun Violence seeks to secure freedom from gun violence through research, strategic engagement and effective policy advocacy.