House, Senate Democrats comment on McAuliffe gun safety action

state-capitol2Virginia House and Senate Democrats offered praise for the announcement from Gov. Terry McAuliffe regarding an executive order issued Thursday aimed at preventing gun violence in the Commonwealth.

The executive order includes the creation of a Joint Task Force to prosecute gun crimes, a ban on the carrying of firearms in state government buildings, the establishment of a tip line for illegal gun activity, direction to the State Police to trace guns used in crime, and a push to encourage judges and prosecutors to seek gun forfeiture in felony cases.

“These are commonsense solutions that will help protect Virginians from gun violence,” said House Democratic Leader David J. Toscano, D-Charlottesville. “I strongly support the Governor’s actions and applaud him for leading the way on this issue.”

“In Virginia and across this nation, we have a very serious problem. Today the governor has taken appropriate steps to ensure safety in the workplace for all government employees – not just elected officials in their respective chambers. Virginia is notorious for being the  source in many gun crimes up and down the East Coast,” saud State Sen. Dick Saslaw, D-Fairfax, the Democratic Leader in the State Senate.

Senate Democratic Caucus Chair Donald McEachin, D-Henrico, said “the Second Amendment does not mean that criminals, domestic abusers, and those who are violently mentally ill are entitled to purchase guns.”

“The actions that were outlined today, and the Task Force that has been created, will help address gun violence right here in Virginia, and I look forward to working with the Governor and the Attorney General on these important initiatives,” McEachin said.

“In wake of the recent Roanoke shooting and others around the country, Virginians and Americans are demanding action from our leaders to combat gun violence,” said House Democratic Caucus Chair Charniele Herring. “I am incredibly proud that Governor McAuliffe is taking this action today, so that we might work to  prevent tragic gun violence.”