Week in Review

STATES TAKE ACTION TO BAN BUMP STOCKS & REDUCE GUN SUICIDES

TOP NEWS STORIES

  • McClatchy | FBI Investigating Whether Russian Money Went to NRA to Help TrumpInvestigators have focused on the activities of the deputy governor of Russia’s central bank, who is known for his close relationships with both Russian President Vladimir Putin and the NRA. It is illegal to use foreign money to influence federal elections.

    • Peter Ambler, Giffords Executive Director: “If it’s true that the NRA’s leadership used Russian money to help elect a Congressional majority and a President, it would be an insult to NRA members and a threat to our democracy.  The NRA was once an organization dedicated to gun safety and sportsmanship, but today it’s been overtaken by lobbyists and has grown increasingly out of touch with the gun owners it claims to represent. The NRA’s executives owe their members – and all Americans – answers to the serious questions that have been raised by this ongoing investigation.”

    • John Feinblatt, Everytown for Gun Safety President: “It’s time for the NRA to come clean. For years, they cozied up to Moscow and a banker now under FBI investigation for meddling in the election. Now they won’t answer any questions about it. It makes you wonder how much they really spent on Trump in 2016 and where that money might’ve come from.”

    • CAP Action Moscow Project put together a helpful memo on the report.

  • The New York Times Opinion | Is This the Collusion We Were Waiting For?“Of all the so-called dark money groups involved in the 2016 election, none spent more than the N.R.A. The $30 million it expended to elect Trump was three times more than the N.R.A. spent on Mitt Romney’s behalf in the 2012 election. … The organization helped Republicans cement control of Congress. If it did so with Russia’s assistance, the whole party is implicated.”

  • Las Vegas Review | Gunman in Las Vegas Shooting Worked Hard to Cover Tracks: The motive behind the shooting, which left 58 dead and more than 500 injured, remains unknown, and the documents suggest that may be because the shooter took many steps to thwart the eventual law enforcement investigation.

  • Fox News San Antonio | ATF Data Shows 70% of Guns Seized in Mexico Can Be Traced to USGunfire, killings, and bloodshed in the streets of Mexico can be a common occurrence, but gun laws in that country make it virtually impossible for private citizens to own firearms of ammunition. According to ATF data, most were purchased legally in gun shops and gun shows in the U.S.

  • Refinery29 | Hollywood Wants Gun Control — For Everyone But ThemMost action stars and have never publicly expressed a conflict in demanding fewer guns in America, while promoting even more of them in Hollywood. It’s rare they’re even asked to consider it, and when the issue does arise, the answer is typically a resounding “no comment.”

  • Variety | Grammy Awards to Honor Victims of Gun ViolenceThe Grammy Awards will honor the victims lost to gun violence and terrorism at various live music events with a special performance by three artists who appeared at the Route 91 Harvest Festival in Las Vegas, Brothers Osborne, Eric Church and Maren Morris. During a shooting that took place at that festival, 51 people were killed and more than 500 injured.

  • The New York Times | Hundreds apply to carry loaded, concealed handguns in D.C. Most don’t live thereMore than 700 people have asked the D.C. police for licenses to carry loaded concealed handguns when they dine, shop and walk the streets of the nation’s capital. In the months since a court ordered city officials to scale back local gun-control laws, police department records show that more than half the applicants are not District residents.

RESEARCH & REPORTS

  • ATF | Stolen Guns on the RiseThe ATF’s annual Federal Firearms Licensee Burglary and Robbery Statistics report released this week found there were 577 burglaries in 2017, an increase from 558 in 2016. In states with security requirements for gun store owners – like New Jersey – the rate of burglary is dramatically lower. Former ATF agent and Giffords Senior Advisor David Chipman explains, “While we should all be alarmed and outraged that gun store burglaries increased for five years in a row, it’s important to remember that theft from gun stores is preventable — just look at what’s happening in New Jersey.” (Read Chipman’s full statement here.)

  • Violence Policy Center | Gun Death Rate Jumps 17% Since 2008 Supreme Court DecisionGun deaths in the U.S. have jumped 17 percent since the 2008 District of Columbia v. Heller decision affirming the right to keep a handgun in the home for self-defense, according to a new analysis of just-released 2016 data from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Injury Prevention. Nationwide, the overall gun death rate (suicides, homicides, and unintentional shootings) increased from 10.21 per 100,000 in 2009 (the year after the Heller decision) to 11.96 per 100,000 in 2016.

ACTION IN THE STATES

  • Alaska | Alaska Remains No. 1 State For Gun DeathsAlaska has the highest rate of firearm deaths in the nation, according to national figures newly finalized by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. There were 177-firearm related deaths in Alaska in 2016, or about 23.3 per 100,000 residents, the highest rate in the country. The national average was a little over half Alaska’s tally: 12 per 100,000 residents. Massachusetts had the lowest rate in the nation, 3.4 deaths per 100,000 residents.

  • Arizona | Intern, Surgeon Who Helped Save Gabby Giffords Lead Gun Law Push in State Legislature: The Legislature began its 2018 session on the anniversary of the Jan. 8 shooting, and the duo again has proposed a slate of gun-related bills, from background checks to a ban on “bump stock” devices.

  • California | 10,000 Californians barred from owning guns are still armed. This law aims to change thatIn response to the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School five years ago, outraged California lawmakers launched a crackdown that seized 18,000 firearms from thousands of people convicted of felonies, subject to domestic violence restraining orders, or judged by the courts to be severely mentally ill. But a surge in gun sales and a reduction in funding has stymied efforts to eliminate a backlog of people who have firearms and shouldn’t.

  • Connecticut | Poetry, Activism Come Together in New Book Exploring Gun ViolencePublishers are planning events related to the book in all 50 states, opportunities for people to meet and discuss. Check the book’s website for times and places, as well as supplementary media.

  • Florida | Miami’s Next Police Chief Is A Veteran With A Goal To Reduce Gun ViolenceJorge Colina, a 28-year veteran who has overseen every division in the more than 1,200-member Miami Police Department, will take over as the city’s chief of police at the end of the month. His philosophy: Increase community policing. Forge better partnerships with federal agencies. Stop the gun violence on the streets that increased the last few months of the year in Miami. “There’s no reason why we can’t be one of the safest cities in the country,” he said. “Reducing gun violence is the priority. I have no sympathy if you chose to use a firearm to commit a crime.”

  • Georgia | Guns Are Legal In Parks. So Why Did Police Ban Them At Peach Drop? Atlanta police sent mixed signals about whether lawful gun owners were permitted to bring concealed weapons to the Peach Drop. After initially being included, firearms disappeared from the city’s list of prohibited items, but police officials stopped short of clarifying whether people with carry permits could attend armed.

  • Illinois | Candidate for Governor Walks Off Stage Over Gun Violence Comment: Gubernatorial candidate Chris Kennedy left the stage during a forum on Monday after Republican State Rep. Jeanne Ives argued the solution to the state’s gun violence was having “more fathers in the home.” Kennedy, a Democrat, replied by pointing out he had grown up without a father before standing up and walking out of the venue. For the Winnetka businessman and politician, gun violence is personal. Both his father and uncle – Sen. Robert Kennedy (D) and President John F. Kennedy (D), respectively – were shot and killed during the turbulent 1960s.

  • Kentucky | Legislation Introduced To Ban Hate Crime Offenders From Owning FirearmsWith this bill, Kentucky joins Alabama, Tennessee, and Mississippi in a growing effort to protect historically targeted communities from hate-fueled gun violence.

  • Massachusetts | State Rep. Dubois Brings Mothers Gun Policy Group to Brockton: The Democratic State Rep. hosted a meeting of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America in Brockton on Thursday in order to form a new local chapter of the national group.

  • Missouri | Caught in the Crossfire of St. Louis Violence, Innocent Victims Face Lifelong Health IssuesMost gunshot victims who arrive at the hospital with a heartbeat will survive, but those with spinal cord or brain injuries face lifelong disabilities on top of psychological trauma.

  • Oregon | Gun-Owning Group in Oregon Advocates for Firearm SafetyNewsHour Weekend Special Correspondent Joanne Jennings traveled to Oregon, where a group of gun owners say they want to find middle ground.

  • Philadelphia | A Little Boy Has a Dream We Should All Have: 6 year-old John Koger had been listening when his teacher read her first graders a book about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to honor the civil rights leader when he realized something many Philadelphians still don’t get — that gun violence affects us all.

  • Texas | San Antonio Man Threatened Mass Shooting At NFL Playoff Game, Affidavit SaysAccording to the affidavit, police said Yuttana Choochongkol, 30, made multiple threats to kill NFL players, fans and himself during the game in Pittsburgh at Heinz Field.

  • Virginia | Great Gun Debate Takes Center Stage in Richmond: Several gun safety measures that Northam included in his legislative priorities for the 2018 session have already been voted down by the Senate Courts of Justice Committee, including a bill requiring universal criminal background checks prior to firearms purchases.

  • Washington | In Our View: Legislature, Lead on Guns“It has been 108 days since Stephen Paddock rained gunfire upon a concert-going crowd in Las Vegas and killed 58 people. Since then, Congress has considered the South Carolina Peanut Parity Act and the Ceiling Fan Energy Conservation Harmonization Act, but has done little to acknowledge that firearms annually result in more than 30,000 deaths in the United States.”

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