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How Mike Pence personally contributed to Chicago’s gun violence epidemic

After nearly 70 people were wounded from gun violence over the weekend in Chicago, the head of a major hospital trauma center decried the role lax gun laws played in the shootings, such as those championed by Mike Pence.

Of the people who were shot in the city, 12 died of their wounds.

Dr. Faran Bokhari is the chairman of the trauma team at Stroger Hospital. Many of the victims were taken there after the shootings occurred.

Bokhari called for “sensible gun laws” to be implemented. He went on to detail that while Chicago has strict gun laws, “it doesn’t help if our neighboring states don’t agree with us.”

One of those neighboring states is Indiana, where Pence served as governor from 2013 to 2017.

During his time in Indiana, Pence was a willing instrument of the gun extremists at the NRA.

During the presidential campaign, Everytown for Gun Safety took note of Pence’s role in the gun pipeline that threatens cities like Chicago: “Rather than strengthening public safety laws—even as Indiana continued to supply crime guns to cities around the country—Governor Pence has parroted the gun lobby’s talking points and promoted their extremist agenda of pushing guns everywhere, for everyone, no questions asked.”

Pence received NRA endorsements in all of his elections between 2002 and 2012, and received an “A” grade for opposing gun safety legislation during that time as well.

As governor, Pence signed legislation increasing immunity from liability for gun manufacturers and repeatedly signed bills that increased the variety of guns that could be used in Indiana.

In its most recent survey of gun flows, Indiana was by far the biggest source of guns to Illinois. According to the Bureau of Alcohol, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), 1,366 guns recovered in Illinois could be traced to Indiana. The next closest for a neighboring state was Missouri, with 434.

Conservatives have often cited Chicago’s problem with gun crime as an argument against gun laws, but ignore the role of lax gun laws in allowing the flow of firearms.

Chicago is also often invoked by the Right due to its large black population. But as the protests after the shootings show, that populace has often spoke out in favor of action — it’s just a series of actions that the NRA and Republicans oppose.

Pence is a stooge of the NRA. He, along with Trump, were featured speakers at the organization’s most recent annual meeting. At that event in Texas, Pence bragged about being an NRA “friend.” Then a shooting occurred at a high school in Santa Fe just two weeks later.

The NRA demands that guns be allowed to flow across America without serious (and popular) legislation enacted to keep citizens safe. Politicians like Pence, who accept millions in donations from the NRA, are a vital element in making the organization’s dreams come true.

When violent gangs fight in Chicago and citizens are caught in the crossfire, they are being helped by figures like Mike Pence, the NRA’s “friend.”

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