What’s at Stake for Gun Control in the 2020 Election

What's at Stake for Gun Control in the 2020 Election

Design by Hanna Varady While nearly 40,000 Americans die from gun violence every year, the Trump administration continues to champion the rights of gun owners and firearm dealers, rather than focusing on the safety of the American people. In a direct response to this, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) refuses to bring H.R.8 —the most historic piece of gun legislation our country has seen in decades, which requires universal background checks—to the Senate floor for a vote. It’s been sitting on his desk since February 2019. America’s gun violence epidemic did not originate from the Trump administration, but President Trump has shown no signs of prioritizing gun safety the past four years. In fact, in the early days of the pandemic, while healthcare workers lined up outside of hospitals in personal protective equipment, Americans lined up in front of gun shops after President Trump, a friend of the National Rifle Association (NRA) , deemed gun shops as "essential businesses." While doing so, he tweeted dangerous calls to action like, "LIBERATE VIRGINIA, and save your great 2nd Amendment. It is under siege!" The tweet refers to the historic gun safety legislation passed in Virginia , which requires background checks on all gun sales, mandates reporting of lost and stolen firearms, and reinstates Virginia’s one-handgun-a-month policy. Additionally, over the summer, St. Louis couple Mark and Patricia McCloskey pointed guns at peaceful Black Lives Matter protestors walking past their home. President Trump rewarded their behavior by allowing them to speak at […]

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