Updates from Alfonso - Richmond Edition - Week 2
Gun Violence Prevention
This has been a wild week at the Virginia General Assembly. I have been working to pass commonsense gun violence prevention measures such as universal background checks, limits on high capacity magazines, and providing background check machines at gun shows. Despite support from 92% of Virginians for universal background checks and 60% of Virginians for limits on high capacity magazines, these bills were voted down in subcommittee. While we were unsuccessful this year, I greatly appreciate the hundreds of gun violence prevention advocates who visited the Capitol on Tuesday and will continue to fight to pass commonsense gun violence prevention measures in the General Assembly.
Virginia is once again faced with the decision to include protection for bicyclists in its following too closely statute. After sponsoring this legislation for the past two years and reaching the floor of the House of Delegates last year, I am optimistic that we can build on this momentum to finally pass this bill in the House of Delegates. I am working across the aisle with Delegate Barbara Comstock (R-Great Falls) to move this legislation forward. After passing out of the Full Transportation Committee this week by a vote of 20-1, this bill is poised to reach the floor for a final vote next week.
Virginia's absentee voting system is antiquated and fails to meet the needs of our community. With the long lines we experienced during the 2012 Election and many of our neighbors working long hours on Election Day, we need an absentee voting systems that encourages early voting. Unfortunately, despite receiving support from the Voter Registrar's Association of Virginia and the AARP, the House Privileges and Elections Committee refused to take action this week to allow no-excuse absentee voting for Virginians age 65 and older. The Committee also killed a measure to allow no-excuse in-person absentee voting. This legislation is essential to ensuring that our entire community has an opportunity to participate in our democracy. With only 37% of registered Virginians coming out to vote for Governor last year, we should be doing more to expand access to voting. We should be making it easier to vote, not harder.
Leave a Comment