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Everytown features gun owners, law enforcement in ad blitz pushing background checks

Everytown features gun owners, law enforcement in ad blitz pushing background checks
© Everytown for Gun Safety

A leading gun control advocacy group is launching a $500,000 ad campaign urging Congress to pass legislation to expand background checks on gun sales.

Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund will air a series of new TV and digital ads in Alaska, North Carolina, Ohio and Texas over the next two weeks. The ads feature gun owners and members of law enforcement in an effort to get Republicans on board with bills to strengthen background checks.

“The frequency of gun crime and mass shootings is deeply troubling,” Columbia, S.C., Police Chief Skip Holbrook says in an ad from Everytown. “It makes our communities less safe and our jobs harder. Supporting background checks is supporting law enforcement.”

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The ad campaign hits the airwaves following a series of mass shootings in recent weeks, including an incident in San Jose, Calif., that left 10 people dead, including the gunman. President BidenJoe Biden 64 percent of Iowans say 'time for someone else' to hold Grassley's Senate seat: poll Philadelphia shooting leaves 2 dead, injures toddler Ron Johnson booed at Juneteenth celebration in Wisconsin MORE again called on Congress to pass gun control legislation after the shooting.

The House passed bills to tighten background checks on gun sales in March, which included a measure to require background checks on private gun sales. But Democrats and gun control advocates are struggling to find enough Republican votes to bypass the Senate filibuster. Everytown’s ads are airing in the home states of GOP senators who have expressed interest in passing a bipartisan background check bill, including Sens. John CornynJohn CornynBlack lawmakers warn against complacency after Juneteenth victory The Senate is where dreams go to die Federal government to observe Juneteenth holiday on Friday MORE (R-Texas) and Lisa Murkoswki (R-Alaska).

Everytown for Gun Safety notes that most Democratic and Republican voters support expanded background checks. A March Morning Consult poll found that 84 percent of voters, including 77 percent of Republicans, support requiring a background check on all gun purchases.

“These ads are a reminder that background checks aren’t a partisan issue, and that the vast majority of Americans support common sense steps to keep guns away from dangerous people,” John Feinblatt, president of Everytown for Gun Safety, said in a statement. “Whether you’re talking to Republicans, Democrats, gun owners, or law enforcement, there is bipartisan support for strengthening background checks, and we’ll keep reminding Congress of that fact until we see action.”

Everytown for Gun Safety, which is backed by former New York City Mayor Michael BloombergMichael BloombergPress: Even Jeff Bezos should pay income taxes What the Democrats should be doing to reach true bipartisanship 5 former Treasury secretaries back Biden's plan to increase tax enforcement on wealthy MORE, has emerged as an influential force in Washington in recent years. The gun control group spent over $21 million to back Democrats in the 2020 election, according to OpenSecrets.org.