Tonko Votes to Advance Major Popular Gun Safety Bill
Bipartisan background checks measure requires nearly all gun transfers to go through licensed firearm dealers
Washington, February 27, 2019
Tags: Gun Violence
WASHINGTON – Congressman Paul Tonko joined more than 200 colleagues in the U.S. House of Representatives today to pass H.R. 8: the Bipartisan Background Checks Act, which would require every gun purchase or transfer to undergo a full background check through a licensed firearm dealer and prevent individuals barred from gun possession from obtaining a gun.
“Today’s vote marks a major turning point in our fight to end America’s gun violence epidemic,” said Tonko. “After every deadly tragedy in the past, Congress has looked for any excuse to ignore the millions of Americans calling for common-sense gun safety reforms. That stops now. This bill is a first step from a newly-elected Democratic majority to in implement lifesaving reforms that are already supported by some 90 percent of Americans. I implore the Senate to approve this measure without delay. Congress can and must do more to stop this uniquely American epidemic of violence and inaction and instead move forward with real solutions that will save lives and prevent further tragedy.”
Since its inception, the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) has prevented some 3 million convicted felons, domestic abusers and people with violent histories from purchasing a gun. A recent study found that more than 80 percent of firearms used for criminal purposes were obtained without a background check.
H.R. 8: Bipartisan Background Checks Act:
Rep. Tonko co-sponsors H.R. 8 and has been a longtime supporter of common-sense gun safety legislation. He has also supported several pieces of common-sense gun legislation, including cosponsoring an Assault Weapons Ban, the Zero Tolerance for Domestic Abusers Act, and other measures designed to keep Americans safe. He held a student town hall on gun violence prevention in 2018 in the wake of the Parkland mass shooting.
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