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Rep. Josh Gottheimer. (Photo: Kevin Sanders for the New Jersey Globe)

Gottheimer urges Senate action on gun control

Congressman facing progressive primary challenge

By Nikita Biryukov, September 06 2019 2:02 pm

Rep. Josh Gottheimer called on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to post for a vote two gun-control bills that cleared the House earlier this year.

“I’m sick and tired of having to wage this fight against gun violence, year in and year out, when so many of the potential solutions are sitting right in front of us,” Gottheimer said. “I’m sick and tired of seeing the alerts come across my phone about yet another mass shooting — thirty-eight this year alone. I’m sick and tired that my two young children and yours have to start their school year with active shooter drills.”

Specifically, Gottheimer called for votes on H.R. 8, which would require universal background checks for gun purchases, and H.R. 1112, which closes a loophole that allows for gun sales to proceed before background checks are completed.

Those bills passed the House in votes that largely followed party lines.

Gottheimer’s call follows a spate of mass shootings in August that left at least 51 dead and scores more injured.

“The best way we can keep our children safe is to finally pass legislation to help keep guns out of the hands of those who would come through the school house doors with an arsenal of weapons fit for war,” Gottheimer said. “This shouldn’t be so hard. It’s a bipartisan issue. To do that, we need real background checks for every single commercial transaction, universally, including at gun shows, so that no criminal, gang member, terrorist, or individual with a mental illness can brandish a lethal weapon.”

Gottheimer, who made a name for himself as a moderate Democrat through his role as co-chair of the House Problem Solvers Caucus, faces a primary challenge from the left in the form of Glen Rock Councilwoman Arati Kreibich.

She’s running in part because of Gottheimer’s moderate record.

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