Congressman Steve Cohen

Representing the 9th District of Tennessee

Congressman Cohen Reacts to Weekend Gun Violence

August 5, 2019
Press Release
Has long history of supporting sensible restrictions on access to guns

WASHINGTON – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09) today reacted to the 31 deaths and multiple injuries this weekend by shooters in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, with the following statement: 

“The horrific killings in Texas and Ohio are yet another grim reminder that people with nefarious motives are getting access to weapons of war and using them on defenseless civilians as they go about their daily lives. Weapons of war have no place in the hands of civilians and background checks for purchasing guns must be thorough. 

“Earlier this year, the House Judiciary Committee, on which I serve as a senior member, held the first hearing on gun violence in eight years. Soon after that, the House passed H.R. 8, the Bipartisan Background Checks Act by a 240-190 vote. If the Senate would take action and the President signed this bill into law, it would begin to save the lives of those like the victims of this weekend’s barbarity.” 

The Bipartisan Background Checks Act requires the use of the background checks system for the transfer or sale of firearms to help prevent felons, people with histories of mental illness, and others, from buying guns. The bill also closes a loophole that permits people prohibited from buying guns from purchasing them from unlicensed dealers such as sellers at gun shows. National polls have consistently shown that a bill requiring universal background checks is supported by more than 90 percent of the American public, including more than 90 percent of gun-owning households.