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VA Gov. McDonnell: More Shootings? Must Need More Guns

In response to questions about the horrific tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary on his "Ask the Governor" segment on WTOP Radio Tuesday, Governor Bob McDonnell suggested Virginia arm teachers, principals and other school staff. Monday, when asked about the tragedy, the McDonnell said it was "way to early" to begin talking about new gun policies. For audio of the exchange, click here.

According to ProgressVA:

"One of the reasons this tragedy has hit us so hard is because in America we hold our schools sacred as safe places for learning, opportunity, growth," said ProgressVA Executive Director Anna Scholl. "There is just no reason for there to be guns in schools. Period. Instead of forcing our teachers to carry weapons and our children to live in fear every day, we should let them focus on teaching and learning and demand that our leaders worry about keeping dangerous weapons off the streets and out of the hands of criminals."

Contrary to assertions by the National Rifle Association and their allies, the evidence shows more guns equal more deaths and more tragedy. Nearly 90 percent of NRA members -- actual gun owners -- agree that support for Second Amendment rights goes hand-in-hand with keeping guns out of the hands of criminals. 34 Americans are murdered with guns every day. 

Our leaders have watched the bloodshed for years without taking any of the common sense steps that we know will reduce gun violence -- requiring a criminal background check for every sale; banning military-style assault weapons and high-cap magazines; and making gun trafficking a federal crime. These are the kinds of steps Americans have been clamoring for leadership on, and this is what our leaders should do now. 

Federal law doesn't currently require a background check for private gun sales at places like gun shows or over the internet -- which account for 40 percent of sales. 80 percent of inmates surveyed got their guns through private transfers. According to law enforcement, closing this loophole is the single most important thing to do to start saving lives. One quarter of gun crimes and one third of police murders involve high capacity magazines.

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