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Feinstein Statement on El Paso Shooting

Washington—Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) today released the following statement on the shooting in El Paso:

“Less than a week ago we were mourning three people gunned down at the Gilroy Garlic Festival. Today we mourn more victims of senseless gun violence in El Paso.

“Early reports are that the gunman used a military-style assault rifle to kill nearly 20 people and wound 40 more. Among the victims was a 4-month-old baby. The shooter was reportedly motivated by a hatred of immigrants. It’s impossible to comprehend such random violence, such mindless evil.

“How many people must die before action is taken? Everyone in this country knows there’s a potential danger out there with individuals who can easily purchase and use assault weapons that can kill large numbers of people.

“This must stop, and the only way we can lower these numbers of shootings is through legislation. We need to tighten background checks and close loopholes that let anyone buy a gun online or at a gun show. We need more states with extreme-risk laws that allow loved ones and law enforcement to remove guns from dangerous individuals.

“And above all we need to ban assault weapons and high-capacity magazines to start drying up the supply. When we passed a federal assault weapons ban in 1994, the number of mass shootings dropped. A study in Boston found 72 percent fewer assault weapons recovered by police during the ban, and a Justice Department study showed 70 percent fewer assault weapons were used in crimes.

“There are more guns in this country than people, and more per capita than any other country in the world. And there are more gun deaths by far. I continue to hope that opponents of commonsense gun reform laws will come to their senses and join the effort that so many Americans support. It’s time to save lives.”