Press Release

NEW VOICES: Giffords Endorses Five Candidates for the House of Representatives

Five candidates, running on new ideas for a better future, are dedicated to passing commonsense gun safety reform.

July 1, 2020 — Giffords PAC, the gun violence prevention organization founded by former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, today endorsed five candidates for the US House of Representatives. The five candidates are gun safety champions running in mostly red areas. They have all committed to bringing their vision and experience to Washington to build on the progress the current majority has made in passing gun safety legislation.

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

“In every part of the country, Americans are looking for leaders who will stand up for stronger gun laws. These candidates have heard that call and are ready to make saving lives from gun violence a priority. The gun lobby is no match for their courage and commitment to pass strong, commonsense reforms that better protect all of our communities. Giffords is proud to endorse these candidates and support their vision for building a safer, stronger America.”

Today’s Giffords Endorsements include:

  • Joyce Elliott (AR-02) Joyce Elliott is an Arkansas state senator running to represent the state’s Second Congressional District. Born and raised in rural Arkansas, Joyce was only the second person of color to graduate from her high school, her sister being the first. Joyce earned her undergraduate degree from Southern Arkansas University and her graduate degree from Ouachita Baptist University. She taught in Arkansas public high schools for 30 years before being elected to the Arkansas State House of Representatives in 2001. In 2008, Joyce was elected to the Arkansas Senate. Coming from a family of hunters, Joyce supports the Second Amendment and also believes that gun safety measures should be enacted to stop senseless acts of violence. During her time in the Arkansas legislature, Joyce has fought for firearm licensing policies and against the gun lobby’s reckless attempts to weaken the state’s firearm laws. Arkansas’s Second Congressional District can trust Joyce Elliott to advocate for commonsense gun safety measures to protect their community.

  • Mondaire Jones (NY-17) Mondaire Jones is running to represent New York’s 17th Congressional District, where he was born and raised. After graduating from Stanford University, Mondaire served in the Department of Justice under President Obama. Mondaire then attended Harvard Law School and went on to work as an attorney for Westchester County. He also co-founded the nonprofit Rising Leaders, which provides mentorship programs to underserved middle school students. Mondaire believes that stronger gun safety measures will help reduce the daily toll of shootings that plagues America. He supports universal background checks, closing the boyfriend and stalker loopholes, and giving law enforcement more time to conduct background checks on gun sales. Mondaire Jones is a fearless advocate for gun violence prevention and will never stop working to keep New York’s 17th Congressional District safe.

  • Carolyn Long (WA-03) Carolyn Long is the Democratic nominee for Washington’s Third Congressional District. Carolyn grew up helping her father run his local produce market and grocery store. When she decided to go to college, she was able to use that experience to get a job at a local Safeway and work her way through school. Carolyn is a well-established member of the southwest Washington community with a 25-year career at Washington State University Vancouver, culminating in time as a tenured public policy and law professor. Carolyn has also authored two books about constitutional law.  Carolyn shares the safety concern of her students, who have come of age in an era of school shootings, and understands the need for sensible gun violence prevention policies. She supports universal background checks and funding gun violence research to better understand this public health crisis that kills almost 40,000 Americans every year. Washington State has made valiant strides in enacting gun safety measures that respect Second Amendment rights in recent years, and Carolyn is prepared to reflect those ideals in Congress.

  • J.D. Scholten (IA-04) J.D. Scholten is running to represent Iowa’s Fourth District in Congress. From a young age, J.D. learned about teamwork and sacrifice from his father, who coached college baseball, and his mother, who worked in public health. After graduating from college, J.D. became a professional baseball player, competing on teams in Canada, Iowa, and Europe. He also used his time in the off-seasons to work as a litigation paralegal, often offering pro-bono legal services to underrepresented communities. J.D. comes from a long line of proud Iowans. He first decided to run for Congress in 2018 to represent the commonsense values of his community in Washington. Despite being seen as a longshot candidate, J.D. came within three points of unseating a white supremacist, NRA-endorsed incumbent while running on a strong gun safety platform. This year, with support for gun safety continuing to grow in Iowa and across the country, J.D. will build on the momentum he created two years ago to earn the honor of representing his northwest Iowa community in Congress.

  • Kate Schroder (OH-01) A fifth-generation Cincinnatian, Kate Schroder is running to represent her home district in Congress. Kate has long been active as a healthcare advocate. She led the Clinton Health Access Initiative’s efforts to expand HIV testing and medical services in Zambia, and continued to be a leader in the field of public health when she returned to the United States. Kate is running for Congress to give a national platform to the issues residents of OH-01 care about most. For Kate, public health and gun safety go hand-in-hand, which is why she believes that our elected leaders should treat gun violence prevention with the urgency it requires. In Congress, she will support lifesaving measures like universal background checks, extreme risk protection orders, and funding for community violence intervention programs.