from site of Rep. Steve Santarsiero, 31st Legislative District, Bucks County
HARRISBURG, April 23 – State Representative Steve Santarsiero, D-Bucks, reacted today, along with CeaseFire PA and Mayors Against Illegal Guns, to today’s Capitol rally hosted by the Second Amendment Action Group.
Specifically, Santarsiero defended his legislation to close a loophole that prevents background checks on all gun sales in Pennsylvania.
“House Bill 1010 in no way infringes Second Amendment rights,” he said. “It simply closes the last remaining background check loophole. Pennsylvania has an opportunity to take a small step toward responsible gun ownership with House Bill 1010, something that Congress seems unable to do.
“My legislation uses the already existing background check system to make sure criminals and the mentally unstable do not have the ability to purchase assault-style weapons. Right now in Pennsylvania, criminals have the ability to purchase an assault-style rifle even though that same criminal would not have the ability to purchase a handgun.
“I believe that I share the same goal as most gun owners – responsible gun ownership. My legislation helps make sure that those who have demonstrated behavior that legally prevents them from owning a firearm will be stopped from purchasing a firearm. That is something that responsible gun owners should want to see.”
Lancaster Mayor Rick Gray, Pennsylvania chairman of Mayors Against Illegal Guns, said, “The Supreme Court is very clear that possession and sale of firearms are subject to regulation under the Second Amendment. Anyone who wants to preserve the Second Amendment ought to agree with Senator Pat Toomey that modest laws like requiring background checks aren’t gun control, they’re common sense.”
West Chester Mayor Carolyn Comitta said: “In the past few months, Pennsylvania has taken some small but important steps that will help keep guns out of the hands of criminals and people with severe mental illnesses. We made a lot of progress on background checks in Washington, but fell a few votes short of a bipartisan compromise. If Senators from places like North Dakota and Alabama won’t stand up for the majority of Americans, it’s up to us make progress here in Pennsylvania.”
CeaseFirePA Executive Director Shira Goodman said: “The votes of Senators Toomey and Casey reflect the wave of change sweeping through Pennsylvania. The people of Pennsylvania are depending on Harrisburg to stand up for us and deliver commonsense gun laws like background checks on every gun sale.”
“I will continue to push for House Bill 1010 to help safeguard our communities,” Santarsiero said. “We cannot remain silent while dangerous criminals and the mentally unstable are able to purchase deadly weapons that can be used for senseless acts of violence.”