DeLauro, Himes praise state’s new gun law, want Congress to act

U.S. Reps. Rosa DeLauro and Jim Himes, both of whom represent a part of Shelton, are praising the passage of stronger gun control laws in Connecticut.

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy has signed the legislation passed by the state House of Representatives and state Senate in the aftermath of the Newtown school shooting.

DeLauro: ‘Proud day for the state’

“This is a proud day for the state of Connecticut,” DeLauro said. “Nearly four months ago President Obama asked if we were doing enough to keep our children safe from harm. The answer then was clearly no. But Democrats and Republicans in Connecticut have come together and taken a first step to change that.

The longtime Democratic congresswoman from New Haven said now it’s time for the U.S. Congress to act in a similar manner.

“For one state’s actions are not enough to keep children safe when there are 50 different sets of laws,” she said. “I urge my colleagues to follow Connecticut’s example and set our differences aside to agree on common-sense solutions so that no one has to suffer as the families in Newtown, Aurora, Tucson, Blacksburg and too many others have.”

Himes: Will make the state safer

Himes, a Democrat from Greenwich, said the new law will make Connecticut a safer place.

“Connecticut lawmakers [have] led the way with passage of strong gun violence prevention measures that will make it harder for the wrong people to get dangerous weapons, and I urge my colleagues in Congress to follow suit sooner rather than later,” Himes said.

“The bill signed into law by Governor Malloy will help keep military-style guns off the streets, ensure that all high-capacity magazines are accounted for, and prevent criminals, the mentally ill, and children from getting their hands on a gun,” he said.

‘An important moment’

Himes noted many state legislators crossed party lines when voting on the bill.

“This is an important moment for a state still grappling with an unspeakable tragedy,” he said, “and I am encouraged by the fact that nearly every legislator from southwest Connecticut — both Democrats and Republicans — voted for these important reforms.

“I applaud the governor and Connecticut legislators for putting partisan politics aside and doing what is right to protect our children and families,” he said.

What the new law does

The new law requires a background check for all private gun sales, bans the sale of more than 100 types of military-style rifles, raises the age requirement to buy a rifle from 18 to 21, requires owners of ammunition magazines holding more than 10 bullets to register them with the State Police, and limits new magazines to be sold to a 10-bullet capacity.

The legislation passed the state House by 105-44 and the state Senate by 26-10. Both legislative chambers have large Democratic majorities, and Malloy is a Democrat.