Democratic Senator Tells Congress To Get Off Its Ass And Do Something About Gun Violence

Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) in response to the Las Vegas shooting where he spoke for the vast majority of Americans when he told Congress to get off its ass and do something about gun violence.

In a statement Sen. Murphy said:

My heart goes out to the victims, their families, the first responders, and the entire Las Vegas community. Nowhere but America do horrific large-scale mass shootings happen with this degree of regularity. Last night’s massacre may go down as the deadliest in our nation’s history, but already this year there have been more mass shootings than days in the year.

This must stop. It is positively infuriating that my colleagues in Congress are so afraid of the gun industry that they pretend there aren’t public policy responses to this epidemic. There are, and the thoughts and prayers of politicians are cruelly hollow if they are paired with continued legislative indifference. It’s time for Congress to get off its ass and do something.

The majority of Americans agree with Sen. Murphy. According to Pew Research, more Americans support gun control (51%) than support protecting gun rights (47%). According to Quinnipiac Univesity, 93% of Americans support universal background checks, and 54% support an assault weapons ban.

The right likes to frame this conversation as an either/or black and white choice. They believe that there can only be unlimited Second Amendment rights or gun control. This talking point is great for stoking fear and boosting gun sales, but from a public policy point of view, it is not true.

There is a middle ground where the Second Amendment rights of gun owners can be protected, but steps can be taken to make it more difficult for criminals and the mentally ill to buy guns.

Sen. Murphy was correct. It is time for Congress to get off of its ass and do something, but until voters show Republicans that there is a price to be paid for slavishly working for the gun industry nothing will change. If you are a voter who wants expanding background checks or common sense legislation to make it harder for mass shootings to happen, you need to make supporting gun reform a condition of getting your vote.

Anything less is an endorsement of the status quo.