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Congressman John Larson

Representing the 1st District of Connecticut

Gun Violence Prevention

Though years have passed since the horrific murder of twenty school children and six faculty members at Sandy Hook Elementary School, here in Connecticut that tragedy remains at the forefront of our minds—especially when discussing the epidemic of gun violence plaguing our country. Since that day in 2012, the United States has experienced a rash of mass shooting events and mourned the loss of tens-of-thousands of men and women due to gun violence. In urban centers like the city of Hartford, gun violence has become a part of day-to-day life.

Like many Americans, Rep. Larson believes the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution protects the rights of citizens to possess legal firearms for personal protection and sporting purposes. However, he also believes implementing commonsense reforms that most Americans already agree on can save countless lives across the country each and every year.

Rep. Larson speaks on the House Floor
Click above to watch Rep. Larson call on House Leadership
to take action on gun violence prevention, or visit:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NqUxv3CfU8c


As the President has said repeatedly, “While there is no law or set of laws that can prevent every senseless act of violence completely, if there is if even one thing we can do to reduce this violence – even one life can be saved – we have an obligation to try.” Though Rep. Larson understands many Americans genuinely disagree about how to reduce gun violence throughout the country, he firmly believes Congress should hold an honest debate on the subject. The majority of the public understands the necessity for reasonable reforms, and he believes Congress could find common ground and pass important legislation.

5 Key Policies to Stem the Epidemic of Gun Violence:
 

1.  A ‘Universal Background Check’ for all firearms purchases or transfers in the United States:

The most effective way to prevent gun violence and mass shootings is to keep weapons out of the hands of people who are legally barred from possessing them, including criminals and individuals experiencing severe mental illness. Far too often, guns are sold without any background check at all to verify whether someone is legally allowed to purchase one. Rep. Larson has supported various background check initiatives in previous years, and he is currently a co-sponsor of Rep. Speier’s Fix Gun Checks Act’ (H.R. 3411).

 

2.  Limitations to the amount of ammunition, or bullets, a firearm magazine can hold:

The memory of the mass shooting in Tucson, Arizona—where Congresswoman Gabrielle Gifford was seriously wounded and six individuals were killed—remains fresh in Rep. Larson;s mind. Law enforcement subdued the shooter only after he was forced to stop and reload his firearm. Rep. Larson firmly believes limiting the number of bullets a magazine can hold is a simple way to blunt the effectiveness a someone who may attempt to carry out a mass shooting,. To that end, he cosponsored Rep. Elizabeth Esty’s Large Capacity Ammunition Feeding Device Act’, H.R. 752

 

3.  Penalty enhancements for people convicted of straw-purchasing firearms:

In addition to insisting on a universal background check for every firearm purchase in the United States, every effort must be made to prevent attempts at skirting those checks. ‘Straw-purchases’ enable individuals who are ineligible to legally purchase a firearm to obtain one by utilizing a third party to complete the sale on their behalf. This type of transaction is already a federal crime, but Rep. Larson believes we must enact a more stringent penalty for those convicted of this crime in the hope of deterring others. Straw-purchasers often cost people their lives, albeit it indirectly, and thus the penalty must reflect the severity of the crime. That is why Rep. Larson was proud to cosponsor Rep. Carolyn Maloney’s Gun Trafficking Prevention Act’, H.R. 3455.

 

4.  Ban the sale of military-style assault weapons:

Military-style assault weapons are firearms designed with characteristics similar to those used on martial weapons intended for combat situations. Rep. Larson strongly feels weapons created with these characteristics are not necessary for either personal protection or sporting purposes, and should not be available for sale to the general public. For those reasons, he cosponsored Rep. David Cicilline’s Assault Weapons Ban’, H.R. 4269.

 

5.  Provide additional counseling and support for youth impacted by urban violence:

Each year, countless young Americans lose friends or family members due to violence in their neighborhoods. Others sustain injuries themselves—both physical and emotional. This trauma takes a toll on their overall health and well-being, leaving them susceptible to depression or aggressive behavior in the following months and years. Increasing access to mentoring, counseling, social-emotional learning programs, and other mental health services to our most vulnerable youths could help them heal and prevent future violence. That’s why Rep. Larson first introduced the City Youth Violence Recovery Act in 2007, and will reintroduce a similar proposal this year. 

 


Rep. Larson stands with Team 26 to demand Congressional action on gun violence prevention.

Rep. Larson is currently a member of the Gun Violence Prevention Task Force, chaired by Rep. Mike Thompson (D-CA) in the U.S. House of Representatives.

 

More on Gun Violence Prevention

April 17, 2013 Press Release

Washington – Today Rep. John B. Larson (CT-01) took to the floor of the United States House of Representatives to call for a vote on legislation expanding background checks to all commercial gun sales. While the majority party in the House remains unwilling to take up any legislation to address gun violence prevention, Congressman Larson plans on filing a bill identical to the bi-partisan Manchin-Toomey background checks proposal, and to subsequently file a discharge petition to bring it to the floor if the House continues not to act.

April 17, 2013 Press Release

Washington – Today Rep. John B. Larson (CT-01) made the following statement after the U.S. Senate rejected a bipartisan proposal expanding background checks to all commercial gun sales:

April 8, 2013 Press Release

Washington - Today Rep. John B. Larson (CT-01) released the following statement after President Barack Obama delivered his remarks at the University of Hartford:

"Tonight, President Obama spoke to the tragedy of gun violence in our nation and what steps must be taken to end it. The President reminded each of us of the victims and families of 12/14 and of all victims of gun violence calling on Congress to vote on legislation that will help make our nation a safer place.

February 18, 2013 Op-Ed and Letters
On the occasion of George Washington's hundredth birthday, Daniel Webster cited one of the great man's last admonishments to the American people: that nothing is more dangerous than a government "at war with the very elements of its own existence."
February 11, 2013 Press Release

Hartford, CT – Today, Rep. John B. Larson (CT-01) and the Connecticut Delegation issued a statement in response to the White House's recent announcement that the Presidential Citizens Medal will be awarded posthumously to the six educators who were killed in the Newtown massacre. In December, the delegation sent a letter to President Obama requesting that he recognize some of the heroes "whose efforts saved lives on that dark day."

January 16, 2013 Press Release

Hartford, CT – Today Rep. John B. Larson (CT-01) released the following statement on the recent advertisement by the National Rifle Association:

December 23, 2012 Op-Ed and Letters
The harrowing and heartbreaking events of Newtown have left the state of Connecticut and the nation reeling from shock and grief. The tragic and senseless deaths of 20 schoolchildren and six teachers at Sandy Hook Elementary School are forcing us to re-examine how we protect our children. How is it possible that daily deaths from mass shootings in cities and suburbs have now become an acceptable norm?
December 17, 2012 Press Release

Washington – This evening, the Connecticut Delegation introduced a resolution that condemned the horrific attack on Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. and expressed support and prayers for those impacted by the tragedy. The resolution passed the Senate (S.Res.

December 15, 2012 Press Release

Hartford – Today Rep.John B. Larson (CT-01) released the following statement on the immediate need for a comprehensive approach to prevent future violence:

December 14, 2012 Press Release

Hartford, CT – Rep. John B. Larson (CT-01) released the following statement today following news of the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, CT:

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