August 05, 2019

Feinstein Statement on Gun Violence

Washington—Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) today released the following statement on gun violence and measures the Senate should vote on this week in a special legislative session:

“The president today said he supports extreme-risk protection laws that allow loved ones or law enforcement to get lawful, temporary court orders to have guns removed from individuals who pose a danger to themselves or others.

“I introduced a bill in February that creates a grant program for states to set up their own extreme-risk protection laws. Fifteen states have such laws, but neither Texas nor Ohio do. That bill, with 27 cosponsors, received a hearing in March but hasn’t been voted upon. The Senate could vote on that bill today.

“The president over the weekend also said he supports stricter background checks for firearms. The House has already voted on universal background check legislation that the Senate could vote on today and send it to the president’s desk.

“Both of those bills are ready to go and are important steps to address the epidemic of gun violence we’re witnessing.

“But we also have to get weapons of war off our streets. It took the Dayton shooter less than 30 seconds to shoot 35 people, nine of whom died. This validates the theory that these weapons are designed to kill as many people as possible, as quickly as possible.

“During the decade the federal assault weapons ban was in effect – 1994 to 2004 – gun massacres dropped by 37 percent compared to the previous decade, according to research by Louis Klarevas, author of ‘Rampage Nation: Securing America from Mass Shootings.’ But the decade after the ban expired saw an enormous 183 percent increase in massacres. It’s time to reinstate a ban on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines to reduce the supply and ban new purchases.

“In just one week, 34 people lost their lives in three mass shootings. Now is the time for decisive action, now is the time to save lives.”

###