Annapolis, MD – Today, the Maryland Democratic Party is calling on Governor Larry Hogan to join States for Gun Safety, a new multi-state coalition to tackle gun violence created by mid-Atlantic states’ Governors Phil Murphy (D-NJ), Chris Cuomo (D-NY), Dan Malloy (D-CT) and Gina Raimondo (D-RI).
In response to inaction in Congress, the governors announced the creation of the coalition this morning to help law enforcement track and intercept illegal guns trafficked across state lines; share information to ensure that individuals prohibited from owning a weapon in their home state cannot purchase one from a neighboring state; and will discuss agreements to allow law enforcement to respond to mass shooting events across state lines. The governors have invited other governors to join.
“I can think of no reason why Governor Hogan would not join this multi-state effort to keep dangerous weapons out of our communities, other than his fear of losing his precious A-minus NRA rating,” said Maryland Democratic Party Chair Kathleen Matthews. “In the wake of yet another deadly mass school shooting in Florida, and a potentially-catastrophic school shooting averted right here in Maryland this week, it is time for Governor Hogan to finally show some leadership and act to prevent gun violence. Governor Hogan likes to say that he was elected to represent Maryland, he should start acting like it instead of playing defense for his NRA backers.”
Hogan, who has an A-minus rating from the National Rifle Association (NRA) and accepted thousands in campaign funding from the group, has a history of obstructing Democrats’ efforts to keep guns out of Maryland communities. In 2016, he opposed legislation to ban guns on college campuses. So far this legislative session, Hogan has refused to endorse several gun violence prevention bills introduced by Democrats, including legislation to ban bump stocks, keep guns out of the hands of individuals denied a permit by the State Police, and prohibit convicted domestic abusers from owning weapons.
During the 2014 campaign, Hogan refused to release his answers to an NRA questionnaire, which earned him his A-minus rating and was caught making secret promises to gun activists behind closed doors.
In response to inaction from Hogan and his Republican allies, yesterday, hundreds of students from Montgomery County staged a walk out and marched to the U.S. Capitol to demand action on gun violence. Semret Haile, a senior at Richard Montgomery High School issued a warning to Hogan and all Republicans refusing to act to prevent gun violence: “If they don’t want to listen to us right now, that’s okay, because we’re going to vote them out in 2018 and 2020.”
A potentially-catastrophic mass school shooting was averted in Maryland last week when a Montgomery County police officer arrested a high school student who was in possession of a loaded gun on campus—less than 24 hours after the tragedy in Parkland, Florida. According to reports, police found an assault rifle, grenades and other explosives, and a bulletproof vest at the student’s home.