Press Release

RELEASE: Giffords Endorses Slate of Gun Safety Champions for Pennsylvania House of Representatives

The endorsement comes as part of the Giffords #VoteCourage Campaign to elect gun reform candidates nationwide

October 11, 2018 — Giffords, the gun safety organization founded by former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and Captain Mark Kelly, announced its endorsement of eight candidates for Pennsylvania House of Representatives.

For too long, the gun lobby has blocked progress on any commonsense gun safety measures in Harrisburg. That has begun to change. In 2018, the Pennsylvania General Assembly passed a bill to remove firearms from those who have been convicted of domestic violence, the state’s first new gun violence prevention law in over a decade. Our endorsed leaders come from a variety of backgrounds, but are united in their belief that more needs to be done to save lives from gun violence. They will fight for extreme risk protection orders and expanded background checks while opposing the gun lobby’s dangerous attempts to weaken Pennsylvania’s firearms laws.

Statement from former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, co-founder of Giffords:

“America experienced three of the deadliest mass shootings in modern history in just the past year. Over 38,000 people in our country were killed by a gun in 2016. Pennsylvania has suffered from this crisis: somebody is killed by a gun in Pennsylvania every 6 hours. Despite this devastating reality, the gun lobby continues to use its cash and influence to try and stop state legislatures from passing laws to make our schools, streets, and communities safer.

“The candidates we are endorsing today acknowledge the toll of gun violence in their state, and they are working to stop it. Their leadership will be critical for our next victories in Pennsylvania to prevent future tragedies. Giffords is proud to endorse these leaders, who have the courage to stand up to the corporate gun lobby and who will never stop working to save lives.”

The newly-endorsed candidates include:

  • Perry Warren – House District 31

  • Steve Malagari – House District 53

  • Tim Briggs – House District 149

  • Todd Stephens – House District 151

  • Carolyn Comitta – House District 156

  • Leanne Krueger-Braneky – House District 161

  • James Santora – House District 163

  • Helen Tai – House District 178

The Giffords #VoteCourage campaign aims to elect gun safety advocates to Congress and defeat politicians who have historically worked against gun reform, or done nothing at all to prevent gun violence. The political program targets incumbents in mostly suburban districts and uses a mixture of TV and digital advertising, on-the-ground organizing, and a voter registration push to create momentum for meaningful progress on gun safety.

Learn More about the Giffords 2018 political program here.