Parkland shooting survivor David Hogg advocates for stricter Virginia gun laws
With about 50 gun-related bills submitted by Virginia Democrats this session, there’s a myriad of new firearm restrictions that could make it to Governor Glenn Youngkin’s desk.
School shooting survivor and gun safety advocate David Hogg, who said the fight over gun laws must be fought in state legislatures as congress fails to act, joined Democratic legislators at the state capitol Thursday. Hogg said recent shootings in Virginia, including one at the University of Virginia in 2022, show a need for action now.
“We cannot stop until no child, no matter what community they’re in, has to fear gun violence,” Hogg said in a news conference.
But Governor Glenn Youngkin, a Republican, signaled at the start of the General Assembly session he had no interest in new gun laws, arguing Virginia’s were already among “the toughest in the nation.”
Still, there are some efforts that have support from the right. Among them is a bill that would hold parents liable for their children getting their hands on a gun and committing a crime.
Lynchburg-area Republican Senator Mark Peake seemed to support greater firearms responsibility among parents. “What can we come up with as a society to put some responsibility on that parent,” Peake surmised in an interview.
Another effort which may lead to more change in the future is a resolution asking the state’s nonpartisan research council to study the effects of gun violence on the Commonwealth.
Northern Virginia Senator Saddam Salim is the patron of his chamber’s version of that bill. “This will allow us to make better policies based on actual data,” he said.
Study resolutions do not require the governor’s signature, but in a statement the Governor told Radio IQ the legislature should instead focus on holding “accountable those criminals that commit crimes.”