Congresswoman Matsui Statement on President Obama's Gun Violence Prevention Proposals

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Washington, DC, January 16, 2013 | comments

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

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Congresswoman Matsui Statement on President Obama’s Gun Violence Prevention Proposals

Today, Congresswoman Doris Matsui (CA-06) released the following statement on the gun violence prevention proposals announced by President Obama:

“I am pleased that President Obama proposed a comprehensive approach to reducing gun violence in our country.  While I respect a citizen’s right to bear arms, I feel strongly that the government must take some common-sense steps to promote responsible gun ownership, to keep guns out of the hands of criminals and to ensure public safety for all Americans.  I believe the President’s recommendations today will go a long way toward reducing gun violence and saving American lives, and I will work with my colleagues in Congress to see them enacted.

“As the President said today, we must act to strengthen background checks and eliminate large-capacity magazines, such as those that were used in the tragic shootings in Tucson, Arizona, Aurora, Colorado and Newtown, Connecticut.  I am currently a cosponsor of several bills that seek to address these issues, including the Large Capacity Ammunition Feeding Device Act and the Gun Show Loophole Closing Act.  I also support reinstating the federal assault weapons ban, as these deadly weapons have no place in our communities.

“The reality is that there is no simple answer to the question of how to reduce gun violence.  In addition to common-sense gun violence prevention measures, the President’s recommendations today include giving law enforcement additional tools they need to prevent and prosecute gun crime, steps to make our schools safer, and also a call to invest in expanding access to mental health prevention and treatment.  These are all critical steps that must accompany stronger gun violence prevention measures, if we hope to ensure our communities are free of gun violence.

“I strongly believe that now is the time to bolster funding and services for mental health care and ensure all Americans have access to the treatment they need.  To help achieve this I will be reintroducing the Excellence in Mental Health Act this month.  This legislation addresses our nation’s fragmented mental health system by enhancing Medicaid funding for organizations, clinics, and health centers that offer community-based treatment and support for millions of low-income and vulnerable people with mental health and addiction disorders.  It is time for mental health to be treated on a level playing field with the rest of our nation’s healthcare system.

“Our nation has lost too many of our citizens to indiscriminate acts of gun violence.  I applaud the President for his bold, comprehensive package of policies designed to make our communities, and our nation, a safer place to live, work and raise a family.  I look forward to working closely with him and my colleagues in Congress to enact these policies.”


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