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Giffords First 2018 U.S. House Primary Endorsements: Veterans Running for Congress that Have Shown the Courage to Stand up for Gun Safety

November 14, 2017— Today, Giffords, the gun violence prevention organization founded by former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and her husband, combat veteran and retired NASA astronaut Captain Mark Kelly, announced its first endorsements in 2018 U.S. House primary races: a group of veterans running for Congress that have shown the courage to stand up for gun safety. Jason Kander also spoke in support of the announcement from Giffords.

In California’s 39th Congressional District, Giffords is backing Gil Cisneros, a former U.S. Naval Officer. Since announcing his candidacy in July, Cisneros has consistently called for safer gun laws, including requiring background checks on all gun sales.

In Colorado’s 6th Congressional District, Giffords is endorsing Jason Crow, a veteran who served in the Army’s 82nd Airborne Division and the 75th Ranger Regiment. Through his experience as a combat veteran, Crow has seen firsthand the devastation that guns in dangerous hands can cause and has called on Congress take up and pass commonsense laws to reduce gun violence, and block dangerous legislation like the deregulation of silencers.

In New Jersey’s 11th Congressional District, Giffords is endorsing Mikie Sherrill, a Navy Academy graduate who became a pilot and spent nearly 10 years on active duty before becoming a federal prosecutor. Sherrill’s background as a Navy pilot and prosecutor have given her a unique perspective on what it takes to reduce crime and combat gun violence, and she has called for Congress to take up and pass sensible solutions that will make communities in the district safer from gun violence.

Captain Mark Kelly, Founder, Giffords:

“We need more leaders in Congress with the courage to stand up to the gun lobby and take action to save lives from gun violence. Military veterans are some of our nation’s foremost experts on guns. They know it’s important to work together to protect both our rights and the security of our communities, and for that reason, I believe that Mikie Sherrill, Jason Crow, and Gil Cisneros are uniquely qualified to make that lasting change in Washington D.C. Their experiences serving the United States have driven them to seek solutions that will help the people they want to represent. That includes solving the epidemic of gun violence. In the years ahead I look forward to working alongside these committed public servants to make our country a better and safer place to live.”

Jason Kander, former Missouri Secretary of State and Army Captain:

“Electing more veterans to Congress means there will be more natural leaders in Washington who know how to get a job done. When you’re in the military, you learn how to both use and respect your weapons, which is why veterans know how important it is that criminals and terrorists shouldn’t have the same opportunity to buy guns as law abiding citizens. I’m proud that Giffords is making it a priority to support veterans because they will be some of the most effective advocates we have for common-sense gun safety measures.”

At all levels of government, Giffords backs candidates with the courage to reject the gun lobby, who are passionate about reducing gun violence, and who commit to taking action once elected. Giffords campaigns in key elections to elevate the issue of gun safety and builds gun violence prevention majorities from state houses all the way up to the United States Senate. Learn more about our 2017 endorsements here.