Statement of Mayors Against Illegal Guns on House Approval of Bill to Override State Laws That Restrict Concealed Carrying of Guns

Nov 16, 2011, 18:57 ET from Mayors Against Illegal Guns

NEW YORK, Nov. 16, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and Boston Mayor Thomas Menino, co-chairs of the bipartisan Mayors Against Illegal Guns coalition, issued the following statement after House passage of H.R. 822, the National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act. The Senate defeated a similar provision in 2009 and is expected to consider the issue again soon.

"Ten months after a disturbed man carried a concealed weapon to shoot Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and 18 others, six fatally, the House voted today to gut state laws on who can carry concealed, loaded guns in public. This was an absolutely embarrassing display of putting special interests and fund raising ahead of public safety.

"A majority of the House ignored the advice of police, prosecutors, domestic violence experts, faith leaders and more than 600 mayors who made clear that this measure will put police and communities at greater risk.  Many members also cast aside their usual respect for the authority of states to decide how to protect public safety in their communities.

"With unemployment over nine percent and Congress taking no action to create jobs, it is astonishing that catering to the Washington gun lobby is the top priority for House Republicans. The vast majority of actual gun-owning Americans oppose this bill: 82 percent of them want states, not Washington, to decide who can carry concealed, loaded guns in public.

"We applaud the Democratic leadership, particularly Chairman Conyers, for waging a principled fight against this bill, and offer thanks to Republican members who stood up for police and public safety, including Representatives Peter King, Michael Grimm, Bob Turner, Dan Lungren, Robert Dold and others.

"The debate now moves to the Senate, which had the sense to reject this measure in 2009.  We urge them to do so again."

About Mayors Against Illegal Guns

Since its inception in April 2006, Mayors Against Illegal Guns has grown from 15 mayors to more than 600 mayors from across the country. The bipartisan coalition has united the nation's mayors around these common goals: protecting their communities by holding gun offenders and irresponsible gun dealers accountable; demanding access to trace data that is critical to law enforcement efforts to combat illegal gun trafficking; and working with legislators to fix gaps, weaknesses and loopholes in the law that make it far too easy for criminals and other prohibited purchasers to get guns.

SOURCE Mayors Against Illegal Guns