Missouri legislature begins again in 3 days on January 6th promptly at Noon. Ready?
We have been notified that we will be fast tracking a bill in the next 2 weeks but have absolutely no idea what it is. GOP leadership won't tell us.
According to bills pre-filed, it's clear that attacking abortion providers and Planned Parenthood, allowing guns on campus & making them tax-exempt and taking away voter rights (10th straight year of Voter ID proposals) is the leadership's priority.
The media reports constantly on our lack of ethic requirements in the Capital (unlimited campaign contributions, unlimited lobbyist gifts & no rules on lawmakers becoming lobbyists) but I guarantee a bill addressing this will NOT make it to the Governor's desk. Why? There's no will by the leadership to change a system that many find profitable.
However we are required now to attend a 30 minute sexual harassment training by McMahon Berger law firm, which represents companies who have had claims of sexual harassment and discrimination. After two highly publicized intern harassment scandals last session, one resulting in the resignation of former Speaker John Diehl along with the media coverage of ongoing sexual harassment in the Capitol, the training is a recommended tool. Hopefully the message will be simply, "don't do it".
For those of you who are not sure who represents you in the MO Legislature - FIND OUT HERE. It's imperative this session that you know who is standing up for you or... not.
This is presidential election season with many statewide offices on the ballot along with every single House member. Make sure you're registered to vote where you live - check HERE.
We need you to be engaged, involved and closely paying attention.
Out of sheer frustration, I pre-filed HB1397 on December 1st, which would require firearm purchasers to undergo similiar restrictions as accessing an abortion in Missouri. Cosmopolitan Magazine asked me recently to write an op-ed on why I proposed a bill which would require gun buyers to visit a doctor - HERE.
Since December 1st, I've heard from almost 1000 people in 45 states who are as mad as I am about the lack of action on gun violence from Congress & most state legislatures.
The New York Times recently profiled Missouri's increasing gun violence rate: In Missouri, Fewer Gun Restrictions and More Gun Killings. St. Louis & Kansas City mayors, police chiefs and prosecutors keep asking for help for "slow motion mass murder", as KC Mayor Sly James calls it. St. Louis City ended 2015 with a record number of gun violence deaths including over 180 homicides, as tracked by STLPD Chief Sam Dotson. There is currently NO
ability to accurately track every gun death in Missouri - including those from domestic violence, accidental shootings of children and suicides.
We ended 2015 with more mass shootings in the U.S. (with 4 fatalities or more) than days of the year - a total of 372, killing 475 and wounding 1870.
So far in 2016? Check out the box at left from www.GunViolenceArchive.org.
Monday January 4th President Obama is scheduled to meet with Attorney General Loretta Lynch to finalize a series of executive orders on fireams to be announced as early as this week, including anticipated expanded federal background checks.
On January 7th, CNN is hosting a hour long town hall on guns with President Obama. I will be
be watching and hope you will too.
We know that 90% of Americans & 80% of Missourians want the background check loophole closed at gun shows and online. Those include NRA members and gun owners. The majority of us want to restrict guns from convicted felons, domestic abusers and those on the federal no-fly list. We want negligent "accidental" firearm deaths of children to be prosecuted. We, including college administrators, do NOT want guns on our college campuses.
My additional firearm bills pre-filed (others coming shortly):
HB1595 - Allows law enforcement, family members to obtain temporary gun violence restraining orders for known armed dangerous persons
HB1596 - Universal background checks, including via internet, gun shows & private sales
We KNOW that More Guns is Not the Answer
Missouri GOP's reaction:
HB1468 by Rep. Eric Burlison (Springfield) - allow concealed weapons anywhere
HB1746 by Rep. Rick Brattin (Harrisonville) - tax exception for firearms & ammunition
HB1819 by Rep. Joe Don McGaugh (Carrollton) - expands legal use of deadly force ("shoot to kill")
HB1899 by Rep. Jered Taylor(Nixa) - allow concealed weapons on college campuses
HB1901 by Rep. Jered Taylor (Nixa) - sales tax holiday for firearms
HB1910 by Rep. Mike Kelley (Lamar) - allow concealed weapons on college campuses
HB1938 by Rep Ron Hicks (St. Peters) - allow concealed weapons on public transportation
SB589 by Sen. Bob Dixon (Springfield) - allow concealed weapons on college campuses
SB731 by Sen. Brian Munzlinger (Williamstown) - allow concealed weapons on college campuses
SB782 by Sen. Bob Onder (Lake St. Louis) - allow concealed weapons on public transportation
We Want Action.
Not "More Prayers" and More Pandering to the Gun Lobby.