It’s almost a week since gunmen killed 31 people in mass shootings, 13 hours apart, and nothing concrete has been done to reduce the risk of gun violence in the U.S.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) says the Senate won’t be taking up any gun bills for another month. He decided to wait, despite the two massacres last weekend, in El Paso and Dayton.
Wednesday night in Harrisburg, Gov. Tom Wolf (D-Pa.), Sen. Bob Casey (D-Pa.), plus representatives of anti-gun groups and members of the public, reiterated their urgent call to federal and state lawmakers for action on legislation for universal background checks.
Tuesday, St. Sen. Lawrence Farnese (D-Phila.) was among a group of lawmakers from both houses of the General Assembly urging Gov. Tom Wolf (D) to call a special session to address gun reform immediately.
The PA SAFE Caucus — made up of 70 members of the Pennsylvania House and Senate — sent this letter to the governor and leaders of both chambers:
According to Sen. Farnese,
“So far in 2019, there have been six mass shootings in Philadelphia, resulting in two deaths and 30 injuries. In July, seven people were shot at a playground in West Philadelphia.”
He also said he, Sen. Vincent Hughes (D-Phila/MontCo) and others sponsored SB 90 on Feb. 14. It was referred to the Judiciary Committee, in which he is minority chair, but no vote was ever taken. The bill would increase penalties for people who illegally
“possess, use, manufacture, control, sell or transfer firearms.”
Newspaper publisher McClatchy’s DC Bureau is reporting Sen. McConnell won’t
“schedule a Senate vote for a House measure to expand background checks. Congress is in recess until Sept. 9.”
In February, the House passed two gun control measures.
However, according to McClatchy, on Thursday McConnell suggested
“the Senate could look at a ban on assault weapons and that there’s Senate support for a move to expand background checks to nearly all gun sales.”
McConnell mentioned reviving a bill from Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) and Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.V.), and support from President Donald Trump, who said Friday the National Rifle Association’s
during the debate.
Also Friday, the arrest warrant affidavit for accused El Paso Walmart killer Patrick Crusius revealed he confessed right away, last Saturday, and later explained he had been targeting Mexicans.
McConnell did question whether the 1994 ban on assault weapons that expired in 2004 showed results.
In New Zealand, gun owners are turning in semiautomatic weapons and gun parts to police as part of a nationwide buyback program.
In March, six days after a lone gunman stormed two mosques, killing 51 people, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced most semiautomatic weapons would be outlawed. The country’s Parliament overwhelmingly did that in three weeks.
Wednesday, Amnesty International issued a warning about the U.S., urging travelers
“to exercise extreme caution when traveling throughout the country due to rampant gun violence.”
It added gun violence is
“so prevalent in the United States that it amounts to a human rights crisis.”
Continuing Coverage: Philadelphia Police Department
- State Reps. thank Ross, Philadelphia Police replace him on web, Aug. 22, 2019
- Details of the harassment, discrimination suit that led Police Comm. Ross to resign, Aug. 21, 2019 (late evening)
- Police Comm. Richard Ross quits amid harassment, discrimination allegations against officers, Aug. 21, 2019 (just after midnight)
- Police shooting suspect facing charges over Wednesday standoff, drugs, Aug. 17, 2019
- See the 6 police officers shot in the line of duty, Aug. 16, 2019
- Suspect surrenders after 6 officers shot, 3 more injured; “Miracle” police all out of hospitals, Aug. 14, 2019
- Video: First fiery justice, then the law, July 8, 2019
- Thinking about religion, belief and recent violence, May 2, 2019
- Control of the media after the mosque attacks in New Zealand, March 16, 2019
- Exposing hate, close to home (as if acceptable anywhere), Dec. 12, 2018
- Level-headed moderation needed now in The Birthplace of America, Nov. 28, 2018
- Difficult week, from anger to sadness, as election approaches, Nov. 4, 2018
- Not a good day for political thoughts, the USA as a whole, Oct. 28, 2018
- Ron DeSantis didn’t learn from Roseanne Barr, Aug. 29, 2018
- More moderation in politics, not so in casting calls, July 17, 2018
- You may be right but don’t let some on the left know (and vice versa)!, July 15, 2018
- In defense of Emma González, not that she needs it but deserves it, May 2, 2018
- Sanctuary cities judges show they know justice, not politics, April 19, 2018
- Distorting history, stirring up stereotypes, April 10, 2018
- My urge: Follow your conscience, despite the cost, April 4, 2018
- Parkland now, but North Miami Beach proud!, Feb. 23, 2018
- Killing kids and desecrating the name of Marjory Stoneman Douglas, Feb. 15, 2018
- Sad stereotypes too strong to silence (for now), Jan. 18, 2018
- Hey, you accused! Would Mom say, wait until your father gets home?, Nov. 29, 2017