Virginians React to Special Session on Guns - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Virginians React to Special Session on Guns

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Gov. Ralph Northam walks away from the lectern after speaking at a rally against gun violence held on the Virginia State Capitol grounds, in Richmond, Va., Tuesday, July 9, 2019. (Photo: AP) Gov. Ralph Northam walks away from the lectern after speaking at a rally against gun violence held on the Virginia State Capitol grounds, in Richmond, Va., Tuesday, July 9, 2019. (Photo: AP)

ACCOMACK COUNTY, Va.- After a mass shooting over a month ago in Virginia Beach, Gov. Ralph Northam called a legislative session to discuss gun reform.

That legislative session was held Tuesday, but less than two hours after beginning, Virginia lawmakers abruptly adjourned without taking any action. Lawmakers postponed any movement on gun control until after the November election.   

But the session was still enough to have locals in the more rural parts of Virginia sounding off. 

“From the day our forefathers started this country, everybody carried a gun, so why stop now," Richard Kromer, a local Virginian said.

But others disagreed and said this is exactly what the state of Virginia needs after a mass shooting. 

People like Brenda Smith said, “I do think that it is necessary for the Governor to crack down on these laws because too many people are dying.”

Like many Virginians who love their guns, most we spoke with say they do not plan on giving their guns away without a fight--many hoping for no legislative changes in coming months.

And even though some gun supporters say they do not agree that all guns pose a threat, almost all supported the idea of better background checks.

"Now I’m totally against a felon. It’s ridiculous to even think about, but they should interview them and do an extensive background check," Glenn Linton said.

Jim Dolan, another resident of Accomack County, says he's all for background checks, but believes the session won't do any good. in the long run, saying the session was more for show if anything, "He did it it to give the people what they wanted," he said of the session.

Others said, “If you stop people from buying guns, the crooks and the murderers are going to get guns from their friends, so you’re not going to stop a thing," Kromer said.

And even though there was no movement on today's proposed bills, Northam released this statement:

“I called legislators back to Richmond for this special session so we could take immediate action to address the gun violence emergency that takes more than a thousand Virginians’ lives each year. I expected lawmakers to take this seriously. I expected them to do what their constituents elected them to do—discuss issues and take votes.

“An average of three Virginians die each day due to gun violence. That means hundreds of Virginians may die between today and November 18, the next day the legislature plans to work.

“It is shameful and disappointing that Republicans in the General Assembly refuse to do their jobs, and take immediate action to save lives. I expected better of them. Virginians expect better of them.”

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