Smucker Sponsors Bill to Prevent Mass Gun Violence
WASHINGTON, D.C. – On Thursday, U.S. Rep. Lloyd Smucker confirmed his commitment to preventing gun violence in the U.S. by addressing lapses in law enforcement coordination and reducing the flow of firearms through illegal street sales.
“From the tragedy at Parkland to the most recent mass shooting in Aurora, Illinois, we’ve seen that lapses in coordination, information sharing and responsiveness from our law enforcement agencies need to be addressed,” Smucker said. “In some cases, the FBI has admitted it has missed red flags and opportunities to intervene and stop shooters. This is dangerous – and if we don’t address these issues soon, we will likely see more tragedies like this unfold in the future.”
The Mass Violence Prevention Act, introduced by Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.) provides new resources to law enforcement as well as more resources for prosecuting criminals for firearm-related crimes.
The MVP Act would establish a “fusion center” at the FBI to help local, state and federal law enforcement coordinate to identify potential threats and respond quickly. Improving access to this information ensures dangerous individuals don’t slip through the cracks and helps prevent future tragedies.
The Department of Justice has used this model to successfully combat terrorism, drug trafficking and child exploitation.
The bill also strengthens penalties for burglaries or robberies of Federal Firearms Licensees. Lancaster County has recently seen a rise in these types of crimes. Last April, four suspects in Lancaster were arrested for a smash-and-grab theft of 16 firearms from a gun shop in Mount Joy Township.
The bill’s introduction comes on the heels of the passage of Democrat-written H.R. 8, a bill requiring federal background checks for all firearm sales. The bill would also criminalize law-abiding gun owners making low-risk transfers.
Democrats in the House also introduced H.R. 1112, which eliminates the 3-day safety-valve provision on firearm purchase. Without a 3-day limit, the FBI has no incentive to get background checks done in a timely manner, resulting in delays and sometimes a total inability to obtain a firearm. Appealing the criminal background check system can sometimes take over a year.
Smucker voted against both bills.
“Instead of creating new laws to undermine our Second Amendment rights, Congress should instead be trying to find ways to prevent the root cause of gun violence,” Smucker said. “These bills claim to be a ‘solution’ to gun violence but unfairly penalize law-abiding gun owners and make it more difficult to legally obtain firearms. Democrats’ true focus is not on gun safety but on limiting the rights of gun owners. That’s clear from their refusal to take the most logical step to combat gun violence: preventing criminals from acquiring firearms in the first place.”
In the in the 115th Congress, Smucker supported several bills to help prevent mass violence, including a bill to fix the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) and the STOP School Violence Act, which expands grant programs to fund violence prevention training and local law enforcement coordination.
“It’s critical our law enforcement agencies have all the tools and information they need to keep the public safe by identifying these wrongdoers,” Smucker said. “The MVP Act is a real commonsense bill. It’s badly needed, so I urge my colleagues to support it.”