Delegate Lopez Urges General Assembly to Strengthen Gun Violence Prevention Laws

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
January 19, 2015

Contact: Jason Stanford, 804-698-1049, DelALopez@house.virginia.gov


Delegate Lopez Urges General Assembly to Strengthen
Gun Violence Prevention Laws 

RICHMOND – Today, Delegate Alfonso Lopez (D, Arlington) stood with colleagues in both the House of Delegates and Senate calling for the General Assembly to take up smart, common-sense gun regulations. 

He has introduced legislation this session (HB 1909) to prohibit the sale and transfer of large capacity magazines, which would include ammunition magazines that carry more than 20 rounds, and (HB 1904) to prohibit authorizing a child four or younger to use a firearm.  

“If it’s illegal to hand a gun to a person with the mental capabilities of a four-year-old, why would you hand a gun to an actual four-year-old?” said Delegate Lopez in a speech on the floor of the House of Delegates. “Virginia is one of just a handful of States where there are more deadly shootings than car accident deaths. What has to happen before we stop playing politics with people’s lives and act?” 

A 2011 study analyzing data kept by the Virginia State Police found a clear decline in the percentage of crime guns that were equipped with large capacity ammunition magazines after the federal ban was enacted. The percentage reached a low of 10% in 2004 and then steadily climbed after Congress allowed the ban to expire; by 2010, the percentage was close to 22%. 

The measure also has broad public support. A CNN poll conducted in December 2012, found that 62% of the public support a ban on high capacity ammunition magazines. These finding were bolstered by a Quinnipiac University Poll in January of 2013, which showed that 59% of Virginians support banning high capacity ammunition magazines. 

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