Our nation has been affected by far too many mass shootings. Tragedies in Roseburg, Aurora, Isla Vista, Newtown, Charleston, and many other cities across the country happen all too often. Congress should do what it can to help prevent further tragedies.
Zoe is a strong supporter and defender of the U.S. Constitution, and the Supreme Court has determined that the Second Amendment confers an individual right to guns. But Congress can take action to prevent guns from falling into the hands of violent criminals, minors, and the mentally disabled - consistent with the Second Amendment.
Zoe supports commonsense reforms to ensure all Americans have a right to safety from gun violence, including:
The Public Safety and Second Amendment Rights Protection Act:
A bipartisan bill to expand the existing background check system to cover all commercial firearm sales, including those at gun shows, over the internet, or in classified ads, while providing reasonable exceptions for family and friend transfers.
The Safer Communities Act:
A bill to keep guns away from people who would misuse them and reduce gun violence by:
clarifying and expanding existing restrictions related to mental health, substance abuse, history of violence, and other risk factors
providing resources to better enforce existing gun violence prevention laws
increasing funds for mental health crisis intervention services; and
improving records reporting to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.
However, in order to be effective, these reforms must go hand-in-hand with improved mental health care - including assertive community treatment, peer supports and supportive housing. These important mental health programs are in short supply all across our nation.
Unfortunately, in the face of tragedy after tragedy - the Republican majority in the House has refused to allow a vote on any of these commonsense reforms. Despite this, it is important to continue efforts to put in place reasonable laws that will do more to ensure the safety of our communities.