Cruz, Alyssa Milano meet to discuss gun reform

Cruz, Alyssa Milano meet to discuss gun reform
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Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzLawmakers spar over surveillance flight treaty with Russia Senators voice support for Iran protesters but stop short of taking action Prisons chief: FBI investigating whether 'criminal enterprise' played role in Epstein death MORE (R-Texas) and actress Alyssa Milano on Tuesday followed through on their pledge to meet to discuss gun control legislation after arranging the sit-down through Twitter last week. 

Each thanked the other for agreeing, though neither appears to have shifted on the issue. 

“I am always grateful for the opportunity to engage in positive, civil discussion on the substantive issues of the day — especially with those with whom I disagree. Today’s meeting was productive and respectful, and I appreciate Alyssa and Fred’s willingness to come here with an open mind. I believe more conversations like this will go a long way in helping unite and heal our divided country,” Cruz said in a statement, referring to Fred Guttenberg, a gun reform activist who lost his daughter in the 2018 Parkland, Fla., school shooting and also attended the meeting. 

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“We all agree we have far too many of these mass shootings, and they need to stop. It is long past time for everyone to put away the partisan talking points so we can work together to solve this problem. We need to act,” Cruz added. 

Milano similarly issued a statement on Instagram, saying that this is an issue Americans of both parties “want fixed.” 

“I hope @sentedcruz will seize this moment and urge his party’s leadership to advance the life-saving gun violence prevention bills pending in the Senate to a full debate and vote," Milano said in her caption.

"We can’t solve gun violence by talking only with people who agree with us. I’m grateful for the opportunity to speak to Senator Cruz, and I hope our discussion inspires Americans across the political spectrum to reach across the partisan divides in our nation."

 

During the meeting, which Cruz shared on Facebook, Milano appealed to Cruz as a parent.

“I’m a mom, I have two children. You’re a dad...I look at my children and want to give them everything, all the greatest possibilities. I look at my children and I’m terrified. I don’t know how to keep my children safe, and it's terrifying. And I think parents across the country feel this way,” she told Cruz, adding that her “biggest fear” is Guttenberg’s reality.  

Cruz used the opportunity to tout his bill, cosponsored by Sen. Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleyOvernight Health Care: GOP senator says drug price action unlikely this year | House panel weighs ban on flavored e-cigs | New York sues Juul Top GOP senator: Drug pricing action unlikely before end of year Key Republicans say Biden can break Washington gridlock MORE (R-Iowa), which he said would “keep guns out of the hands of felons and dangerous individuals.”

Cruz claims it would’ve helped to stop the shooting in his home state last month in Odessa that killed eight people. 

The bill was first introduced by the senators in 2013, and reintroduced as the Protecting Communities and Preserving the Second Amendment Act of 2019 bill in May. 

But the Republican-backed bill falls short of reform measures Democrats and activists are calling for. 

The Democratic-controlled House passed a universal background check bill in February, with eight House Republicans voting with all Democrats in favor of it, that has yet to be called to a vote in the GOP-majority Senate. 

Some Democrats have also proposed a ban on assault rifles as well as a gun licensing and mandatory buyback program. 

In the past couple of months, a series of mass shootings has renewed Democrats’ push for gun reform. A shooting in El Paso, Texas, in August killed 22 people. One day later, another in Dayton, Ohio, killed nine. 

The Odessa shooting later in the month killed eight others. 

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellOvernight Health Care: Fireworks on health care expected at Dem debate | Trump FDA pick dodges on vaping ban | Trump to host meeting on youth vaping Friday | AMA calls for immediate vaping ban GOP senator blocks vote on House-passed Violence Against Women Act On The Money: Senate scraps plan to force second shutdown vote | Trump tax breaks for low-income neighborhoods draw scrutiny | McConnell rips House Dems for holding up trade deal MORE (R-K.Y.) has placed the legislative ball in President TrumpDonald John TrumpFive takeaways from the Democratic debate As Buttigieg rises, Biden is still the target Leading Democrats largely pull punches at debate MORE's court, saying that he will only call bills to a vote that the president will sign. Trump has previously said he supports expanded background checks before later backtracking after meeting with gun rights activists and conservatives.