Domestic violence victims are 5 times more likely to be killed if their abuser has access to a gun. In the U.S., a woman is killed by an intimate partner with a gun every 16 hours. The Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act (VAWA) that made improvements in services for victims of domestic violence and sexual abuse, also aimed to tighten gun laws against the abusers. The bill passed. Bill Posey voted against it. Why?
Individuals convicted of domestic violence offenses against a spouses or family member are already banned from owning firearms under federal law. Unfortunately, and to a women’s detriment, this law may not apply if you are not married to your abuser. This out- dated premise known as the “boyfriend loophole” is fundamentally flawed. This legislation seeks to close the loop. An overwhelming 93 percent of the women murdered by men in 2015 were killed by a man they knew, according to a recent study conducted by the Violence Policy Center.
The bill in question also included a provision that would make it illegal to own a firearm if you were subject to a temporary restraining order. Experts say that victims are at the greatest risk of danger immediately after filing for a protective order, and are likewise in dire need of this protection. What seems like common sense measures to protect victims from their abusers, did not outweigh the importance of owning a gun according to Posey’s vote. By voting this way, he has placed the rights of guns over the right to safety (and in some cases the right to live). Perhaps this isn’t all that surprising if you’re already aware of Posey’s A rating with the NRA and the thousands upon thousands of dollars he has received from them during his elections.
But this isn’t the first time Representative Posey has voted against the landmark of 1994 to protect women from violence. In fact; he has voted against it every time it has been brought to the floor during his tenure. Fortunately, despite this unjustified and disgraceful opposition, it has still passed. Until now. Although it has passed the house, it is now at the mercy of the Senate, where Mitch McConnell has blocked it. Now more than ever, it is imperative that we keep guns out of dangerous people’s hands. A domestic abuser is certainly a red flag. It’s a burning flag.
Every right we have in this Country comes with a responsibility. The second amendment allows us to own a weapon should we choose to. It does not allow us to be irresponsible or unlawful. Those who abuse their rights or exercise them unlawfully, are subject to restriction in order to protect the public. The number one role of the government is to provide safety to its citizens. Any legislation or lack thereof that puts individuals at greater risk is unacceptable and a failure of government. Any lawmaker that puts special interest groups above their constituents safety and best interests is also unacceptable.
The NRA has enormous influence over Republicans in Congress because of the money it gives them. In the 2016 elections, they spent close to half a billion dollars supporting Republican candidates. However, If their candidate of choice break ranks and votes against their interests; the NRA will spend even more in their opposition. The longer a lawmaker is in office, the more influence they can have on them. I am going to change that. I will never take a dime from the NRA which within itself is falling apart at this very moment from alleged internal corruption. I will always stand for protecting everyone against violence over any influence. I am not a career politician. I have signed the US Term Limits pledge and will honor it, and seek to bring term limits to congress.
It’s time to get large interest group money out of politics. I am committed to campaign finance reform. The influence of outside money in our government has proven to be polarizing, divisive, and crippling. The focus has shifted from the electors to the elected, no longer representing the great people of our nation. I want to hear your voice. I want to be your voice. I want to make things better, and I want to do it together.
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