Two days after a gunman killed 59 people in Las Vegas, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Phil Murphy issued a strong statement, doubling down on the mourning – but also adding a harsh rebuke – and a commitment to undertaking a stepped up gun law agenda.
He started with his favorite target: Governor Chris Christie, as the statement bled outward to ultimately engulf his rival in the Nov. 7th Governor’s race: Republican Kim Guadagno.
The Democrat said in the wake of the deadliest mass shooting in American history that he was shocked to see Christie “immediately jump to the defense of gun manufacturers, claiming ‘a whole bunch of new gun laws’ won’t stop mass shootings.'”
“And, as she has for the last eight years, Lieutenant Governor Guadagno followed Governor Christie’s lead, refusing to debate the issue by saying now was ‘not the time’ to discuss the public health crisis of gun violence,” the candidate added. “Lieutenant Governor, now was not the time for 59 innocent Americans to lose their lives in yet another mass shooting.
“Evasiveness after a mass shooting is part of the Republican playbook. The Republican Party, the NRA, and gun manufacturers continually refuse to debate our epidemic of gun violence, while hiding behind our 2nd Amendment,” Murphy added. “Meanwhile, over 1,500 mass shootings have taken place in America in just the past five years.”
The former ambassador to Germany pointed out that that country has one of the highest gun ownership rates in the world, right behind the United States. But Germany also has one of the lowest rates of gun related deaths worldwide. “Why?” he asked. “Because Germany implemented strong common-sense gun safety measures, including thorough background checks, mandatory licensing processes, and a ban on fully automatic weapons.”
Murphy said the Republican Party is largely bought and paid for by the NRA and gun manufacturers, who have proven that they care far more about their quarter-to-quarter profitability than about gun violence and mass shootings.
“They are putting profitability above American lives,” he said. “Don’t be fooled by Governor Christie, Lieutenant Governor Guadagno, and the rest of the Republican Party: common-sense gun safety measures would save thousands of American lives every year, while doing nothing to harm the 2nd Amendment. As hopeless as this cause can sometimes feel in the wake of yet another tragedy, we must continue to band together and fight for common-sense gun safety measures right here in New Jersey and all throughout America. Thousands of American lives will depend on it.”
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