Chairwoman Lauren Neochea released the following statement in response to the shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas:
Like all Idahoans, I am devastated by the loss of 19 young children and 2 teachers in Uvalde, Texas. My heart goes out to the families who will endure unthinkable pain for the rest of their lives. This comes on the heels of the mass shooting targeting the Black community in Buffalo, New York, adding to our collective grief over senseless deaths and deadly hate.
As a mother of two school-aged children, I am horrified. As a state legislator, I am frustrated. I have seen the Idaho Legislature vote down even basic gun violence prevention measures. In 2018, legislators rejected a commonsense bill requiring domestic abusers to have a “cooling off period” after their conviction without access to guns. This would make it easier for law enforcement to protect the domestic abuse victims just as they face a heightened risk of being murdered. A law like this could have prevented the murder of a Wilder woman by her husband in 2015. Her heartbroken children are still grieving and still waiting for the Idaho Legislature to prevent other families from experiencing the same heartbreak.
My fellow Idahoans, the time to bow down to the gun lobby and sweep this issue under the rug is over. We must pass commonsense policies to make it harder for people set on taking innocent lives to get their hands on weapons designed for war. We can do this while protecting the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding people.
What is not working is complete inaction. I ask every Idahoan who wants to see change to speak out and demand it from their elected officials before another tragedy occurs.
For more information or interview requests, contact:
Avery Roberts, Communications Director for the Idaho Democratic Party
208-305-5610 or firstname.lastname@example.org