RICHMOND, Va. — The leader of the local chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America said Monday’s gun-rights rally and lobby day at the Virginia State Capitol is a “very good example” of why stronger gun laws are needed in the Commonwealth.
“Many people who had planned to be at the Capitol today cancelled their events because they were frightened. There were credible threats and people that wanted to go and honor victims of gun violence were unable to do so today,” said Courtney Champion, the local group lead of the Richmond chapter of Moms Demand Action. “And it’s because extremists, many of them not even from Virginia, descended on our Capitol today.”
Some gun control groups cancelled their planned lobby day events on Monday. The Coalition to Stop Gun Violence stated it was doing so out of “ongoing, credible threats to public safety that have been promoted and encouraged by gun extremists.”
But, while the events were cancelled, Champion, along with several other members of Moms Demand Action, a group that advocates for stronger gun laws, were watching Monday’s events from a hotel room a few blocks from the State Capitol.
Champion said while there were no lobby day activists held by her group, they would be back at work on the issue on Tuesday.
“Virginians overwhelmingly support gun safety laws, like gun safety checks and red flag laws. Polling shows its. The fact that a record number of people voted in November and gun violence prevention was their top issue, kind of, proves that point for us,” added Champion. “I want lawmakers to know that even after today, Moms Demand Action volunteers will keep doing what we’ve been doing and that is the un-glamorous heavy-lifting advocacy work that got them elected and we’ll continue to hold them accountable.”
Champion said along with focusing on getting gun laws passed in Virginia, they group will also be focusing the 2020 federal elections.
“I think that a lot of the pushback that we are getting right now is because we flipped our state legislature right in the NRA’s backyard and they know that we’re winning,” said Champion. “As you know, we have elections every year in Virginia and that’s what we do. We will fight for our gun sense presidential candidates the same way we fought for our state candidates and we did all that work and we won and that’s what we’re planning to do this year, too.”