(Washington) Today, U.S. Representative Ted Deutch (FL-22), the House Representative for Parkland, Florida, issued the following statement:
“Again and again and again, Congress has done nothing to protect Americans—to protect schoolchildren—from mass shootings. We owed it to the thousands of families who have been torn apart by gun violence. We owed it to the 19 grieving parents in Uvalde. We owed it to every child going to school today in America.
“Today, we began to do better. Today, we passed the Protecting Our Kids Act.
“The laws we passed today could have saved at least 437 lives since Columbine.
“We voted to raise the age to buy semiautomatic rifles from 18 to 21. That could have saved 56 lives lost in mass shootings since Columbine, including the 17 lost in Parkland.
“We voted to ban high-capacity magazines for rifles and handguns and to ban bump stocks for civilian use. That could have saved 311 lives since Columbine.
“We voted to pass best practices for safe gun storage and penalize those who fail to secure a gun from those who can’t own one, including minors. That could have saved 86 lives.
“We voted to subject ghost guns to existing federal firearm regulations. That could have saved at least 15 lives, including 3 lost in the Philadelphia shooting on Saturday.
“None of these laws violate any American’s constitutional rights. Claims to the contrary are wrong and misleading. Many of them are already enacted in states around the country. The best time to pass this legislation was in 1999, in response to the shooting at Columbine. The next best time was today.
“Today, in the House chamber, it was time to pick a side. Every single Member of Congress was on the record siding with our children or with the gun lobby. I was proud to stand with the children, especially the young people from Parkland. If they have not given up, if they are still marching, so am I. Together, today, we took the next step toward making our nation safer.”
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