Durbin Previews Judiciary Committee Hearing on Common Sense Solutions to Gun Violence in America

WASHINGTON – In a speech on the Senate floor today, U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, discussed the recent mass shooting in Atlanta where a gunman murdered eight people—six of whom were Asian-American women—in what appears to be an act of domestic terrorism. Durbin also previewed a hearing the Senate Judiciary Committee will hold tomorrow  on gun violence in America and advocated for passage of common sense gun violence prevention measures. 

“I announced last week that this hearing on common sense steps to reduce gun violence in America would be held this week. On the same day I announced that hearing, a gunman murdered eight people in a string of shootings near Atlanta, Georgia. One man, seven women. Six of the victims were Asian-Americans. He committed these murders with a gun he had bought the same day. That day children lost their parents, husbands lost their wives, and fear and trauma reverberated across America and the Asian American community,” said Durbin. “Last weekend 20 people were shot in our city of Chicago, four of them fatally. And across the nation, every day, we lose on average 109 American lives to gunfire, suicide, domestic violence shootings, accidental shootings, and homicides… another 200 Americans are injured by guns each day. The numbers are sobering and that is why tomorrow the Senate Judiciary Committee is going to address this issue.”

Durbin also slammed Republican blockage of gun measures in the past using the filibuster.

Durbin continued, “What stopped us from passing a bill in the United States Senate for background checks? To make sure that convicted felons did not purchase guns legally in America, and would be stopped because of roadblocks we put in their paths? People who were mentally unstable would not have access to guns, which they could use to hurt innocent people, as we have seen over and over again…what stopped that from happening? A rule in the United States Senate. It's called the filibuster.”

Video of Durbin’s remarks on the Senate floor is available here.

Audio of Durbin’s remarks on the Senate floor is available here.

Footage of Durbin’s remarks on the Senate floor is available here for TV Stations.