Pelosi Floor Remarks Demanding Commonsense Gun Safety Legislation

July 5, 2016
Washington, D.C. – Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi delivered remarks on the House floor this evening calling for a vote on commonsense gun safety legislation.  Below are the Leader’s remarks:

“Thank you very much, Mr. Garamendi, Representative Garamendi.  Thank you for your consistent, persistent leadership in these special orders to put forth issues of concern to the American people.  Right now we're talking about saving lives.  We're talking about responsible background checks, gun purchases, as well as ‘No Fly, No Buy’.  If you're on the terrorist list, you can't fly, you shouldn't be able to buy a gun.  What's so difficult about that for our Republican majority to understand?  Actually, on the background check legislation, we're talking about expanding the background check bill that already exists to include Internet sales – something relatively new, not new compared to when we passed a bill in the middle ‘90s – and we're talking about gun shows.  This would save lives to have background checks on everyone who is there to purchase a gun.

“In the 80[th] [percentile], 85 percent of the American people support responsible legislation for background checks, which is what we are proposing.  And 90 percent support ‘No Fly, No Buy’.  The only place where there’s an obstacle to this reasonable, commonsense legislation is on the Floor of the House of Representatives.  I am so proud of our Members, led by John Lewis, who weeks ago tomorrow led the sit-in on the Floor of the House.  It was remarkable and it generated interest throughout the world – over [10 million] impressions from what went out from the Floor of the House; something remarkable, something appropriate for the People’s House.  And then following that, for this to go for 25 hours and then to continue over the weeks and [when] we were in recess into our districts to have the beat go on.  And now we’re back and the beat will continue to go on.

“And I think if there is one message of hope that John Lewis gave us is that we are not going away until the job is done.  So, respectfully, I ask our Speaker of the House to give us a vote to enable us to show the support that commonsense, sensible gun safety legislation has in this House.  I believe that if given the opportunity that this House will support that legislation – maybe that's why it will not be brought up.  But I will also associate myself with the concerns expressed by Mr. Garamendi about a bill, the Cornyn bill – I think it has a new name in the House – it is the gun lobby bill, the gun lobby bill, the NRA bill.  It is not a gun safety bill.  It is an excuse for not doing something really effective and sensible.

“So you will be seeing the stories of the people and the families affected, the most eloquent stories of all – their stories of their loss.  And they’re channeling their grief to make sure it doesn't happen to other families.  What a beautiful sense of community.  We thank John Lewis for being the unifier in all of that.  And we thank all of our Members for their participation.  And I thank you, Mr. Garamendi, and yield back to you.  Thank you.”