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Republicans Ignore America’s #1 Public Health Crisis & #1 Killer of School Age Children: Guns

No candidate put forth a plan to address “access to guns,” the country’s top public health concern and the #1 killer of children aged 1–17.

Washington DC —GIFFORDS, the gun violence prevention organization founded by former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, released a statement following Wednesday’s Republican Primary Debate on Fox News and former president Donald Trump’s interview with Tucker Carlson. Despite the chorus of recent data showing that “access to guns” and gun violence is a top concern for voters across the political spectrum, not a single candidate tonight put forth a plan to prevent guns from falling into the wrong hands. 

Peter Ambler, GIFFORDS Co-founder & Executive Director:

“As our kids head off to begin a new school year, parents everywhere will put on a brave face as they wave goodbye on the first day of school. It’s natural for parents to fret about whether their kids will hit it off with their new teacher, or fit in and make new friends. But nowadays, no parent can ignore the horrifying possibility of shootings as guns have become the number one killer of school age children in America.

“Parents deserve to send their kids to school without worrying that they’ll never come home. But as we saw tonight, not a single Republican candidate for president presented a plan to combat gun violence. Guns kill more than 115 people every single day in this country and the candidates tonight gave no indication they intend to stop it. Thankfully, we can trust President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris to fight the gun lobby and protect our communities.

“Saving lives is not a partisan issue—Republicans, Democrats, and Independent voters already agree on what needs to be done. That’s why we’ve seen more and more conservative Republicans stand up for proven, commonsense gun laws in states across the country.

“This isn’t 1994—the politics of guns have been turned on their head. Until national Republican Party leaders wake up and join a supermajority of voters, they will pay a steep political price for ignoring the number one public health concern in America.” 


A recent GIFFORDS poll of presidential battleground states found that 86% percent of Republicans support universal background checks, 81% want to require a license and mandatory training, and three-fourths want to crack down on untraceable ghost guns. Further, President Biden’s Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, the first major gun bill in three decades, has the support of 76% of voters in battleground states, and they overwhelmingly want to see more gun safety laws. 

Earlier this month, GIFFORDS PAC was proud to join a coalition of gun violence prevention groups for a first of its kind endorsement of President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris for reelection. 


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