40 House Members Join Connolly Gun Buyback Plan

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Rep. Gerald Connolly

Forty members of the U.S. House of Representatives have sent a letter urging Republican House Speaker John Boehner and Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi to support an immediate $200 million gun buyback program in any end-of-the-year fiscal cliff deal.

Congressmen Gerry Connolly of Virginia and Ted Deutch of Florida authored the letter to the House leaders.

“Gun buybacks have proven successful in communities across the nation,” Connolly and Deutch said in a “Dear Colleague” to House members.  “Adding $200 million to the final compromise on the fiscal cliff could remove as many as 1 million guns from our streets.”

Noting that such programs are supported by law enforcement agencies as a valuable resource for reducing gun violence, the two congressmen said including the gun buyback program in any year-end deal “is a simple, immediate step we can take to assure the public we are committed to taking meaningful action.”

In their letter to the House leaders, Connolly and Deutch said federal financial support to help local communities and states conduct buyback programs could also bolster local economic activity.  “Distributing funding to the States to run buyback programs using prepaid debit cards with a three-month expiration date could provide a jolt to local economies that have stagnated in the wake of the recession and concerns over the fiscal cliff.”

“The murder of 20 youngsters and six educators in their classrooms has galvanized the public’s desire for immediate action, and partnering with the States on a nationwide gun buyback program is a modest, common-sense start,” the two congressmen said.

Congressman Gerry Connolly’s 11th Congressional District in Northern Virginia includes the headquarters of the NRA.  Six of the victims of the 2007 Virginia Tech shootings, including the shooter, were from Connolly’s district. Earlier this week, a column from Connolly on the subject appeared in the New York Times Op-Ed Section.

 

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Truman Lewis
A former reporter and bureau chief, Truman Lewis has covered presidential campaigns, state politics and stories ranging from organized crime to environmental and consumer protection.

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