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At NRA Annual Meeting: U.S. Representative John Lewis, Gun Violence Prevention Leaders, Survivors And Hundreds of Advocates Demand Action to Prevent Gun Violence

April 28, 2017

U.S. Representative John Lewis to Join Hundreds of Gun Safety Advocates from Moms Demand Action and the Everytown Survivor Network on Saturday to Rally in Opposition to the NRA Leadership’s Dangerous Agenda

Updated Fact Sheet on NRA Leadership’s Extreme Transformation Over Past 30 Years Available Here

ATLANTA –As the National Rifle Association’s annual meeting gets underway, volunteers with Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America and the Everytown Survivor Network, both part of Everytown for Gun Safety, are preparing to stand with civil rights leader and U.S. Representative John Lewis, gun violence survivors, elected leaders and advocates from around the country in opposition to the extremist NRA Leadership’s “guns everywhere” agenda that contributes to the more than 90 Americans who are shot and killed and the hundreds more who are injured every day. Tomorrow the group, led by the Georgia chapter of Moms Demand Action, will rally together to send a message to NRA leaders and our nation’s leaders that public safety must not be jeopardized by the gun lobby’s dangerous agenda.

“It seems that some public servants have forgotten their duty to the American people,” said U.S. Representative John Lewis. “We serve in Congress to represent their concerns. Ninety percent of Americans say they would like to see some kind of common-sense gun regulation, but there has been no action on the Hill. There are bipartisan proposals a majority of House and Senate members on both sides of the aisle could support, but Republican leadership has vowed not to bring a bill to the floor. The American people realize their safety and security is at stake. The easy access to guns has had constant deadly consequences in our society. I stand with the people in their struggle to demand common-sense reforms and to tell the gun lobbyists that human life is more precious than profit.”

The gun lobby’s ultimate goal is “concealed carry reciprocity” – legislation that would make Americans less safe by forcing states to recognize the concealed carry standards of all other states, no matter how low the standards. It would make the weakest link the law of the land and force states to allow domestic abusers, convicted stalkers, people with violent histories and people who lack even the most basic gun safety training to carry concealed guns in public.

“I am determined to stand and fight back against the gun lobby’s dangerous agenda that puts American families – particularly women, children and communities of color – at risk,” said Lucy McBath, mother of slain teen Jordan Davis and Faith and Outreach Leader for Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. “I am proud to stand with Congressman Lewis and the millions of Americans who believe there is more we can do to prevent senseless gun violence in this country.”

President Trump will speak at the NRA-ILA leadership conference today– the first time in more than 30 years a sitting U.S. President has done so. The NRA gave more than $30 million dollars to President Trump’s campaign.

“NRA leaders are hoping their investment in the election will help them pass dangerous legislation that would enrich gun manufacturers while endangering Americans. This includes dismantling the criminal background check system, making gun silencers more accessible, and – their ultimate goal – passing ‘Concealed Carry Reciprocity,’” said Shannon Watts, founder of Moms Demand Action. “That’s why Moms Demand Action volunteers and gun violence survivors are in Atlanta this weekend, and it’s why we’ll continue to show up in D.C. and in statehouses and boardrooms across the country until our nation’s lawmakers put the safety of our families and communities above the profits of the gun lobby.”

Earlier this week, Everytown released an updated fact sheet —that can be found here —highlighting the gun lobby’s radical shift in its policy positions from reasonable to extreme including how the organization wrote the very gun laws it now calls unconstitutional. At the 2014 NRA annual meeting, Moms Demand Action and Everytown released a report, “Not Your Grandparents’ NRA,” that explores how the NRA has changed its positions over the past 30 years and how the organization has shifted from one that promotes hunting, marksmanship, safety training and supported sensible gun laws, to one that virulently opposes any public safety measures to keep guns out of dangerous hands and save lives.

“This is not about a fear of gun owners,” said Lindsey Donovan, an army veteran, gun owner and volunteer chapter leader for the Georgia chapter of Moms Demand Action. “In fact, most gun owners – like me and most Americans – do not agree with many of the priorities of the NRA leaders, who no longer represent hunters and sportsmen. The gun lobby has morphed into something more extreme – the lobbying arm for gun manufacturers that only cares about selling more guns. We are here to expose that radical transformation – and to demand our leaders stand up to the craven gun lobby.”

This week, a new poll released by Americans for Responsible Solutions found that 67 percent of gun owners agree the NRA has been “overtaken by lobbyists and the interests of gun manufacturers and [has] lost its original purpose and mission.”

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