Larson, U.S. House Members Vow To Keep Fighting: “The American People Have Spoken And Deserve To Be Heard”
June 23, 2016
WASHINGTON – Today, Reps. John B. Larson and John Lewis led a group of more than 170 of their colleagues in an unprecedented sit-in on the floor of the House of Representatives. Backed by their Senate colleagues and hundreds of Americans inside and outside of the Capitol, they called for votes on commonsense background checks for all gun purchases and preventing potential terrorists from purchasing firearms. The protest disrupted the regular order of the House, sparked a massive protest in support of reforms outside the Capitol, and led to Speaker Paul Ryan adjourning the House until July 5th.
“The American people have been crying out for Congress to do something,” said Larson. “If Republican leadership refuses to listen, House Democrats will make sure their message is heard. Today, Republicans shut off our microphones and turned off the cameras, but they could not silence us. Thanks to the power of social media and an American public tired of being kept in the dark, we made sure their pleas and their outrage were heard loud and clear. It was an honor to stand beside the iconic John Lewis as he made history yet again. While I am deeply disappointed that Speaker Ryan chose to adjourn the House -- choosing to do nothing than debate an issue that is killing thousands of Americans -- this is not the end. The people have spoken. We stand united with the vast majority of Americans in saying enough is enough.
“Nearly 15 hours ago, we came to the House Floor to demand bipartisan action in response to the epidemic of gun violence and mass shootings in our nation,” said Lewis. “This is not a Democratic or a Republican issue; it is an American one. As legislators we were elected to do everything in our power to respond to concerned constituents’ repeated calls to action. We must come together and do what is right and what is just. Congress must pass meaningful, thoughtful, and mindful legislation. The time to act is now. We can be silent no longer.”