WASHINGTON, DC - Congressman Steny H. Hoyer (MD-05) spoke on the House Floor today in support of H.R. 8, the Bipartisan Background Checks Act of 2019. Below is a link to the video and excerpts from his remarks:
Click here to watch the full remarks.
"This House is finally going to do its job and take action – not just a moment of silence, but action to address the epidemic of gun violence in our country. After the tragedies at Sandy Hook, Orlando, Las Vegas, Charleston, Tree of Life Synagogue, and Great Mills High School in my district, the House under the previous leadership did nothing. It didn't work. After the shooting just down the street at the Washington Navy Yard, the Republican-controlled House did nothing. Three of the victims of that attack were constituents of mine, living in Southern Maryland."
"Dr. Wendy Edmonds and Wanda Wallace are in the [House] Gallery, Mr. Chairman. [They are] sisters of Sylvia Frasier, a Navy Yard shooting victim. Montana Geimer [is in the Gallery]. [She is the] daughter of Wendi Winters, a writer for the Capital Gazette, [who was tragically killed in the shooting] of which my colleague, Mr. [Anthony] Brown, just spoke. And Mackenzie Boughey, a high school student who organized the March For Our Lives rally in Anne Arundel County, [is in the Gallery]. They are here with us today, not to have a moment of silence, but to have a moment of action."
"Many of our districts have been painfully affected by gun violence. In Saint Mary's County, Maryland, as I told you, a student was killed by a shooter at Great Mills High School, and a courageous school resource officer there saved countless other lives. In Annapolis, five staff of the Capital Gazette were gunned down in their newsroom. For years, the American people have demanded action to address gun violence."
"After the Parkland shooting, just over a year ago, students marched in cities from coast-to-coast to demand that Congress protect them in the classroom, in the streets, in houses of worship, and in all public gathering places. I, as I'm sure many of you have had, had the opportunity to meet with many of the students who participated in the March For Our Lives and heard the determination in their voices as they spoke about working to achieve a future where students would no longer have to practice active shooter drills in their schools. I found their courage and persistence deeply inspiring."
"Now with a change in the Majority control, we are bringing to the Floor legislation supported by, as I said, nine out of ten Americans, including a majority of responsible gun owners, to expand criminal background checks."
"We will also be voting this week on legislation offered by our Whip, Mr. [Jim] Clyburn to close the loophole that contributed to the horrific mass shooting at Mother Emanuel AME Church in Charleston in 2015."
"I urge the Senate to follow the House and pass the legislation we advance, and I call on the President to sign it without delay… Let us not have a moment of silence for this bill. Let us pass it. Let the Senate pass it. Let the President sign it. Let's make an effort at least to stop the carnage."