Senator Champion: Protect our children by passing sensible gun laws
State Senator Bobby Joe Champion (DFL-Minneapolis) urged legislators to get serious about protecting our children in Minnesota schools by passing sensible gun regulations in Minnesota. “How many children need to die in this country before politicians have the courage to make sensible changes to our lax gun laws,” Sen. Champion said. “I’m appalled House and Senate Republican leaders won’t commit to taking up reasonable gun safety legislation, even in the light of the senseless and horrible shooting tragedies happening at schools across the nation.”
Sen. Champion supports a package of legislation to stem the tide of violence while recognizing the importance of responsible gun ownership. Some of the common-sense bills include:
- Creating a system of universal background checks for all gun sales between private parties, including internet sales and sales across state lines. (SF 1261)
- Prohibiting people who have certain types of restraining orders against them, or pose a significant risk of harming others, from possessing firearms. (SF 1262)
- Banning “bump stocks,” devices that increase how fast a gun can fire bullets, effectively making firearms into machine guns. (SF 2601)
- Allowing people with mental health issues to voluntarily add themselves to a registry that would prohibit them from purchasing guns. This is similar to existing registries casinos make available to people who are addicted to gambling.
- Providing $100,000 to study and reduce trauma caused by firearms with a pilot program housed in the Minnesota Department of Health.
“Over the years, I have authored a number of bills to enact universal background checks, to close the loophole on background checks when purchasing guns, and for mental health funding to identify those who could be a risk. This package of bills, if enacted, would be the first step in making our citizens—and especially our children — safer,” Sen. Champion said. “The sad reality is that partisan gridlock and fear of the NRA is the reason we can’t pass sensible gun control legislation. This year, more than any other, I was hopeful there would be potential for an attitude change because of the many students from across the country that are standing up, marching and making their voices heard. Sadly, Republican politicians in St. Paul seem to have turned a deaf ear.”
“I urge every single person in our district to contact the Republican leadership in the House and Senate and demand that sensible gun bills be given a hearing this session,” Sen. Champion said.