Gabby Giffords & Mark Kelly Applaud the Election of Endorsed Candidate Stephanie Murphy to the U.S. House of Representatives

November 8, 2016 – Former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and retired NASA astronaut Captain Mark Kelly, the Co-Founders of the gun violence prevention organization Americans for Responsible Solutions PAC, issued the below statement on the election of Stephanie Murphy to the United States House of Representatives:

Tonight, Florida has elected a leader to the House of Representatives who will stand with the Vocal Majority of Americans who want to protect the rights of law-abiding gun owners, keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people and save lives. We congratulate Stephanie Murphy on her election to the House of Representatives.

“The gun lobby worked hard to re-elect a leader that will protect the status quo, fight for inaction and preserve the loopholes in our gun laws. And the gun lobby lost. A candidate who stood with the gun lobby time and time again was held accountable for voting against the interests of their community.

“Florida is lucky to have a leader like Congresswoman-Elect Murphy who will protect our Second Amendment rights and make our communities safer.”

HIGHLIGHTS OF ARS PAC’S PROGRAM IN FL-07 IN SUPPORT OF CONGRESSWOMAN-ELECT MURPHY

Endorsement: In September, Congresswoman Giffords, Captain Kelly, and ARS PAC endorsed Congresswoman-Elect Murphy as their Florida Champion for the Vocal Majority.

Campaign to Hold Rep. Mica Accountable: ARS PAC initiated a first-time partnership with the House Majority PAC to launch a $60,000 targeted direct mail campaign to hold Rep. John Mica accountable for his ties to the gun lobby and his refusal to vote to close loopholes in federal law that let dangerous people buy a gun without a background check, even after 49 Americans were killed in the nation’s deadliest mass shooting at Pulse Nightclub.Click here to view the first FL-07 mail piece.

Click here to view the first FL-07 mail piece.

Click here to view the second FL-07 mail piece.

Click here to view the third FL-07 mail piece.

Vocal Majority Tour Launch Event in Orlando: In addition to these investments, ARS PAC made numerous other investments in key battleground states and races. In September 2016, Congresswoman Giffords and Captain Mark Kelly visited Orlando and stood with Congresswoman-Elect Murphy as they launched their 16-state, 42-day Vocal Majority Tour to encourage Americans to vote to stop gun violence and build grassroots support for ARS PAC-endorsed candidates like Murphy.

Gabby Giffords & Mark Kelly Celebrate the Election of Val Demings to the United States House of Representatives

November 8, 2016 — Former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and retired NASA astronaut Captain Mark Kelly, the Co-Founders of the gun violence prevention organization Americans for Responsible Solutions PAC (ARS PAC), tonight celebrated the election of ARS PAC-endorsed candidate Val Demings to the United States House of Representatives:

“As Chief of the Orlando Police Department, Val Demings saw our nation’s gun violence crisis first hand. And tonight, Florida voters sent a clear message that they want a leader in Congress who will make our communities safer while protecting the rights of law-abiding citizens,” said Congresswoman Giffords and Captain Kelly.Tonight is yet another victory for the Vocal Majority and a major defeat for the Washington gun lobby. We congratulate Congresswoman-Elect Demings on her victory tonight and look forward to working with her to keep guns out of the wrong hands in Congress to make Florida a safer place to live.

Giffords, Kelly, and ARS PAC endorsed Demings in September. Following the endorsement, on September 27th, Congresswoman Giffords and Captain Mark Kelly visited Orlando to launch their 16-state, 42-day Vocal Majority Tour with Val Demings, Stephanie Murphy, and other leaders from across Florida.

ARS Revokes Endorsement of Senator Mark Kirk In Wake of His Racist Attack on Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth

October 29, 2016 – ARS PAC announced today it has revoked its endorsement of United States Senator Mark Kirk of Illinois and released the following statement by ARS PAC Executive Director Peter Ambler:

In public office, your values matter as much as your votes. That’s the example Gabby set in Congress and in her campaigns, and that’s the example we must follow in the movement to reduce gun violence. Senator Kirk’s racist attack on Congresswoman Duckworth is unacceptable and represents a low point, even in this election season. For that reason, Americans for Responsible Solutions PAC is revoking its endorsement of Senator Kirk. While we believe the path to responsible change and communities safer from gun violence must include Republican champions, we cannot continue to support Senator Kirk. A man who is not worthy of your vote cannot be worthy of our endorsement. As Gabby and Mark wrote in August, Congresswoman Duckworth is an American hero and a powerful voice for stronger gun laws. She will be an exceptional United States Senator.

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New PPP Poll Shows Patrick Murphy, Marco Rubio Tied as Gun Violence Prevention Becomes Key Issue in Florida Senate Race

October 28, 2016 –  As the battle for the White House is increasingly focused on Florida, Americans for Responsible Solutions PAC (ARS PAC), the gun violence prevention organization founded by former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and her husband, the Navy combat veteran and retired NASA astronaut Captain Mark Kelly, released new research today demonstrating that a plurality of 47 percent of voters consider gun violence prevention measures like support for background checks for all gun sales to be a deciding issue in casting their vote.

The release of the poll coincides with the return of ARS PAC’s Vocal Majority bus tour to Florida today as Congresswoman Giffords and Captain Kelly rally with vice presidential nominee Senator Tim Kaine. The Vocal Majority Tour launched in Orlando on September 27th.

Among undecided voters in the hotly contested Florida Senate race, a plurality of 41 percent said that they would be less likely to vote for a candidate who opposes background checks, even if they agreed with the candidate on most other issues. Furthermore, among likely voters, a clear majority (58 percent) are more likely to vote for a candidate who supports strengthening gun laws. Senator Marco Rubio, who has consistently voted against gun violence prevention measures, is now tied with challenger and ARS PAC-endorsed candidate Congressman Patrick Murphy, 46/46. Sen. Rubio trails Murphy among voters who support background checks by nine points (42/51).

The ARS-commissioned Public Policy Polling (PPP) poll, showed that Florida voters are overwhelmingly in favor of gun safety proposals introduced in Congress this year, such as prohibiting individuals on the FBI Terror Watch List from buying guns (89 percent) and requiring background checks on all gun sales, including those sold online or at gun shows (85 percent).

“This new research is further proof that standing with the gun lobby and opposing responsible change to our gun laws is a political liability. With the Senate race in a dead heat, it is more important than ever that we ignite the Vocal Majority of Florida voters who support responsible gun safety measures to turn out and elect champions like Patrick Murphy and Hillary Clinton,” said Zach Stewart, Political Director, Americans for Responsible Solutions PAC. “This Senate race offers a clear choice between one candidate, Patrick Murphy, who is committed to making our communities safer and another, and Sen. Marco Rubio, who has repeatedly refused to support reasonable gun safety legislation. In a state that experienced the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history, voters are ready to elect leaders who will stand up to the gun lobby.”

While Sen. Rubio has failed to push any commonsense gun measures in Congress, he still benefits from voters thinking he has a stronger gun safety record than his actual policy positions indicate with a majority of voters either unsure of his stance or of the belief that Rubio supports background checks on gun sales (63 percent) and supports prohibiting individuals on the FBI Terror Watch List (74 percent).

Across the state, the survey results indicate that gun violence prevention is a priority issue for voters of all backgrounds and partisan leanings, including gun owners, women, men, Democrats, Republicans, independents, Hispanics, voters of all age groups, and undecided voters, who overwhelmingly (at least 82 percent) agree that taking action to make it harder for criminals to get guns is an important issue.

The Vocal Majority Tour is part of ARS PAC’s “Vocal Majority” campaign this fall to mobilize millions of Americans to make the 2016 election a referendum on gun violence prevention and to support leaders up and down the ballot who are committed to taking responsible steps that reduce gun violence.

Americans for Responsible Solutions PAC Endorses John Carney for Delaware Governor

October 28, 2016 Americans for Responsible Solutions PAC (ARS PAC) – the gun violence prevention organization founded by former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and retired NASA astronaut Captain Mark Kelly – today announced its endorsement of John Carney for Governor. Citing his support for a broad set of responsible gun violence prevention policies that help keep guns out of the wrong hands and protect the rights of law-abiding Americans, ARS PAC declared John Carney its Delaware Champion for the Vocal Majority.

The endorsement is part of ARS PAC’s “Vocal Majority” campaign this fall to mobilize millions of Americans to make the 2016 election a referendum on gun violence prevention and to support leaders up and down the ballot who are committed to taking responsible steps that reduce gun violence. ARS PAC previously announced endorsements this year in races for the United States Senate, United States House of Representatives, state legislatures, and gubernatorial races and plans to make additional endorsements of candidates this fall.

“John Carney knows that with our right to own guns comes the responsibility of keeping guns out of the hands of felons, domestic abusers, and other dangerous people. We are proud to support John Carney, a leader who has stood up to the Washington gun lobby in Congress and stood up for bipartisan change that will help prevent gun tragedies. We look forward to having John Carney as a champion for the vocal majority of Americans who are calling on their elected leaders to do more to protect their rights, reduce gun violence, and make our communities safer,” said former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and Navy combat veteran Captain Mark Kelly, the Co-Founders of the gun violence prevention organization Americans for Responsible Solutions PAC.

“I am grateful to have the support of Congresswoman Giffords and Captain Kelly. These two public servants have dedicated themselves to championing gun violence prevention, and I’m proud to stand by them. I will continue working with them to reduce the gun violence in our communities, our state, and our country,” said Congressman John Carney.

Along with its endorsements of its Champions for the Vocal Majority, this year ARS PAC is making significant investments in races and ballot initiatives across the country to support pro-gun violence prevention candidates and responsible ballot initiatives. ARS PAC is also working to hold candidates in the gun lobby’s grip accountable, including Senator Kelly Ayotte in the New Hampshire Senate race.

On Tuesday, September 27th, Congresswoman Giffords and Captain Kelly also launched a six-week, 14-state, 42-day nationwide bus tour – the Vocal Majority Tour – to encourage the vast number of Americans who support commonsense change to our gun laws to step up, speak out, and be catalysts for change this November. The Vocal Majority Tour has traveled to communities in battleground states and districts for grassroots events with local leaders, elected officials, and candidates to help ignite the Vocal Majority and elevate gun violence prevention in this fall’s election. The Vocal Majority Tour has already traveled to Florida, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Maine, Massachusetts, New York, Connecticut, Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C.

Earlier this year, Congresswoman Giffords and Captain Kelly joined with Delaware leaders in Wilmington to announce a new bipartisan coalition, the “Delaware Coalition for Common Sense.” The coalition’s members – which include leaders from across sectors and parties – has worked to urge elected officials to advance policies that help keep guns out of the wrong hands and prevent gun tragedies while protecting the rights of law-abiding Americans to own firearms. Earlier this year, the coalition worked to pass a bill that strengthens the state’s gun background check laws by closing a dangerous loophole that lets gun sales to proceed before the criminal background check is complete.

In 2015, Congresswoman Giffords visited the Delaware State Capitol and called on lawmakers to pass SB 83 and help keep guns out of the hands of domestic abusers. Americans for Responsible Solutions also supported the bill through an advocacy program that included that included digital advertising, grassroots organizing, mobilizing key supporters in Delaware urging them to tell their representatives to support the bill. Click here to learn more about Americans for Responsible Solutions’ work in Delaware.