Bishop Blaire Voices Disappointment At Senate Failure To Support Measures To Reduce Gun Violence

April 19, 2013 By Public Affairs Office

WASHINGTON—The chairman of theCommittee on Domestic Justice and Human Development of the U.S. Conference ofCatholic Bishops (USCCB) expressed "deep disappointment in the Senate's failureto support reasonable regulations to reduce gun violence in our nation" in anApril 18 letter to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Senate Minority LeaderMitch McConnell.

"The USCCB has been working withother faith leaders and organizations urging Congress to support legislationthat builds a culture of life by promoting policies that reduce gun violenceand save people's lives in homes and communities throughout our nation," wroteBishop Stephen E. Blaire of Stockton, California. "In the wake of tragic eventssuch as the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary, the failure to support evenmodest regulations on firearms is a failure in moral leadership to promotepolicies which protect and defend the common good."

The U.S. Senate failed to passamendments to the Senate's gun violence legislation (S. 649) that would haveexpanded background checks for gun purchases, increased penalties for guntrafficking, reinstituted an assault weapons ban and imposed restrictions oncivilian access to high capacity ammunition magazines. Bishop Blaire noted thatmany of the provisions of the bill enjoyed bipartisan support.

"Though we are disappointed, we willcontinue our efforts to work with Congress and other people of good will toadvocate for policies that create a safer and more peaceful society," BishopBlaire wrote.

The full text of Bishop Blaire'sletter is available online: www.usccb.org/issues-and-action/human-life-and-dignity/criminal-justice-restorative-justice/upload/Letter-to-Senate-Leadership-on-Gun-Violence-Vote-4-18-13.pdf

Additional information on the U.S.bishops' advocacy on gun violence prevention is available online: www.usccb.org/issues-and-action/human-life-and-dignity/criminal-justice-restorative-justice/index.cfm

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Keywords: U.S. bishops, Catholic Church, USCCB, U.S.Conference of Catholic Bishops, Domestic Justice and Human Development, BishopStephen E. Blaire, gun violence, S. 649, U.S. Senate, Harry Reid, MitchMcConnell, background checks, gun trafficking, high capacity ammunition magazines,bipartisan support

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