PHILADELPHIA, Pa. (WHTM) — In response to the deadly shooting at a Texas elementary school on Tuesday, Governor Tom Wolf will join CeaseFirePA for the “Ulvade to Pennsylvania” End Gun Violence Rally.
To watch the rally, click on the video player above when it begins at 12 p.m.
“Too many communities here and across the nation have known the terror of a mass shooting, and too many communities deal with gun violence every day that may not make nationwide headlines but still leave fear, grief, and heartbreak in their wake. Gun violence has become entrenched in our nation, and the fact that our legislators at the state and national levels seem to be just fine with that is the greatest tragedy of all. I am heartbroken. I am angry. But I refuse to give up on calling on our lawmakers to enact common-sense legislation that protects Pennsylvanians,” Gov. Wolf said.
Gov. Wolf also highlighted CeaseFirePA’s common-sense agenda to end gun violence, outlined below:
- Require reporting for lost and stolen guns within 72 hours.
- Close loopholes and require background checks on all gun sales.
- Require safe storage of firearms to keep guns out of the wrong hands to prevent accidental injury/death and suicides.
- Create red flag laws to protect those who may be a danger to themselves or others.
Earlier this week, Governor Tom Wolf called for immediate action from the General Assembly and Pennsylvania’s Congressional delegation to pass legislation to prevent gun violence.
“Gun violence has become entrenched in our Nation and the fact that our legislators in the State and in the National level seem to be just fine with that, that’s the greatest tragedy of them all. And that really makes me angry,” Governor Tom Wolf (D) said.
“It doesn’t have to be this way, not in Uvalde, not in Pittsburgh, and not on the streets of Philadelphia every single day it doesn’t have to be this way,” Attorney General Josh Shapiro (D) said.
Gov. Wolf also said he is tired of the lack of action by a Republican-led legislature that seems more focused on “pushing dangerous bills that would loosen restrictions and put Pennsylvanians at risk.”
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An effort by Democratic lawmakers in Pennsylvania to ban owning, selling, or making high-capacity, semi-automatic firearms hit the state House of Representatives floor on Wednesday but went nowhere in a 111-87 vote against the effort.
“We have to also to do everything in our power to reduce access to firearms,” House Leader Joanna McClinton (D) said.
The GOP-majority Legislature has long rejected appeals by Democratic governors over the past two decades to tighten gun control laws, rejecting such ideas as expanding background checks or limiting the number of handgun purchases one person can make in a month.
Pennsylvania’s U.S. senators, Bob Casey (D) and Pat Toomey (R), also reacted to the elementary school shooting by trying to find common ground to pass some kind of gun legislation.
It takes 60 votes in the U.S. Senate for legislation to pass. That means Democrats need 10 Republicans on their side, something that hasn’t happened in the 10 years the since Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre.
“What I really need and what we all really need, is for our legislators is to do their jobs, to pass some laws,” Wolf (D) said.
Sen. Toomey wants another chance at the bill he came up with nearly 10 years ago with Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin to expand background checks to all commercial sales. They didn’t have the votes then, but Toomey is hoping to find them now.
Congress is expected to leave for its Memorial Day recess on Thursday afternoon, so any kind of vote may have to wait until it returns the week of June 6.
The Associated Press has contributed to this article.