Gabby Giffords & Mark Kelly Statement on the Oregon State Senate’s Passage of Background Checks Bill

April 26, 2015 – Former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and retired Navy combat veteran and NASA astronaut Capt. Mark Kelly, the Co-Founders of Americans for Responsible Solutions, issued the following statement after the Oregon State Senate approved legislation that closes the loophole in Oregon law that allows people to buy guns without undergoing a background check:

“Today, the Oregon State Senate stood up for common sense and for safer communities. We hope that leaders in the House do the responsible thing and follow suit by passing this critical legislation, which will make Oregon a safer place to live,” said former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and retired Navy combat veteran and NASA astronaut Capt. Mark Kelly, Co-Founders of Americans for Responsible Solutions. “As the House begins to considers this important legislation, we hope its leaders keep in mind that not only this bill the right thing to do, there is widespread support among their constituents for commonsense changes to Oregon’s laws like this one.”

The bill, SB 941, would address the gap in Oregon law that lets unlicensed sellers transfer a firearm to another person, including through online sales, without a background check. Under current law in Oregon, individuals must pass a background check before they can buy a gun from a licensed firearm dealer and at gun shows. While individuals can request a state background check before selling a gun to another person, Oregon does not require unlicensed sellers to conduct a background check when transferring a gun.

A recent survey of registered Oregon voters conducted on behalf of Americans for Responsible Solutions found that a broad majority of Oregonians – including gun owners – support expanded background checks for gun sales. Among the survey’s findings: 87 percent of Oregon voters support expanded background checks on gun sales, with 70 percent saying they strongly support them; and 83 percent of Oregon gun owners support expanded background checks on gun sales. Click here to read a memo on the research’s findings.

Americans for Responsible Solutions has also engaged in a statewide digital campaign to educate Oregonians on gaps in current Oregon gun laws and highlight commonsense changes that can make their communities safer. The campaign, which will target more than 700,000 people in the state and run for the duration of the legislative session, will encourage Oregonians to contact their legislator and urge them to support current proposals that address these loopholes in the state’s guns laws. Read more here.