Giffords on Gun Control: ‘Time is Now’

Photograph by Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Retired NASA astronaut and Navy Capt. Mark Kelly, right, and his wife, shooting victim and former Rep. Gabby Giffords arrive for a Senate Judiciary Committee followed by Chairman Patrick Leahy and ranking member Sen. Chuck Grassley before hearing about gun control on Capitol Hill on Jan. 30, 2013.

“The time is now.”

The words of former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona, who was grievously wounded in a gunman’s attack in Tucson in2011, appearing today at a hearing of the Senate Judiciary Committee.

“You must act,” Giffords told the Senate committee, holding its first hearing on the issue of curbing gun violence since the latest massacre that shook the nation, the shootings of 20 first-graders and six educators in Newtown, Connecticut, last month.

“Be bold, be courageous,” Giffords told the committee. “Americans are counting on you.”

Her husband, retired astronaut Mark Kelly, shared a picture of the couple before the committee and posted these notes on n Twitter:

“Americans are looking to us for solutions and action,” said Judiciary Chairman Patrick Leahy of Vermont.

There should be no question, Leahy said, about expanding the instant background checks required for gun-buyers.

He also said this, at a hearing that will include testimony the National Rifle Association’s Wayne LaPierre.

“The Second Amendment is secure and will remain secure.”

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