Giffords slams Congress over inaction after latest mass shooting

Giffords slams Congress over inaction after latest mass shooting
© Greg Nash

Former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.) on Sunday reacted to news of the mass shooting in Jacksonville, Fla., with a condemnation of Congress's inaction on gun control. 

"We do not have to accept these horrific acts of violence as routine," Giffords, who was critically injured in a mass shooting in 2011, said in a statement. "Congress knows steps they can take to stop this madness. Too many of them simply lack the courage to act."

Multiple people are dead and one suspect has been killed after the shooting, which took place at a video game tournament in the downtown area of Jacksonville.

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Giffords is a leading gun control advocate and helped found Giffords, a nonprofit organization that advocates for stricter gun regulations.

"The nation once again looks to Florida with grief and heavy hearts," Giffords said. "The massacre in Jacksonville is a tragic reminder of the threats we face from gun violence, no matter who we are or where our day takes us. And it's yet another devastating indictment of this country's inability to keep our kids safe." 

Florida has seen multiple mass shooting attacks in the past few years, most recently the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School that left 17 dead and 17 injured last year. 

The Giffords group has given Florida an "F" rating on its gun laws, claiming they are weak. 

Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) signed into law a gun reform bill weeks after the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting. The law raised the age to purchase a gun and allowed law enforcement to bar a person deemed dangerous due to mental illness from owning guns for up to a year. 

"For those with the power to pass laws that will save lives, thoughts and prayers are not enough," Giffords said. "They can fix this. They can keep our kids safe in classrooms, churches, at concerts, and in arcades."

“And should they choose not to, then it is our job to do everything we can this November to elect a Congress that will," Giffords said.