Giffords Visit Puts Pearce In The Hot Seat

Failing to acknowledge that common sense gun laws lead to safer communities and save lives, for 20 years Steve Pearce has worked hand in hand with his major donors in the gun lobby to halt any progress. Only three sitting members of the House have gotten more cash from gun lobbyists.Since his early days as a state legislator, Pearce has worked to block child access prevention laws, undermine concealed carry restrictions, and he even opposed legislation that would keep guns out of the hands of suspected terrorists and domestic abusers.

“New Mexico has one of the highest rates of death from gun violence in the country, but it seems like Steve Pearce doesn’t care,” said Marg Elliston, Chair of the Democratic Party of New Mexico. “There are steps New Mexico must take to protect our communities, but Steve Pearce is more interested in helping the NRA and Donald Trump put more guns on the streets.”

Pearce said he supports background checks, but voted against strengthening life-saving checks.

  • 2002: Pearce Said He Supported Background Checks. In 2002, Pearce said he supported background checks to prevent felons from acquiring weapons. [Albuquerque Journal, 5/23/02]
  • 2015: Pearce Voted for Blocking Consideration Of Background Checks For Gun Purchases. In October 2015, Pearce voted for to block consideration of a vote “on the bipartisan King-Thompson Public Safety and Second Amendment Rights Protection Act to strengthen the life-saving background checks that keep guns out of the wrong hands.” The previous question passed, 244-183. A vote against the previous question was to force a vote on background checks. [H Res 466, Vote #541, 10/8/15; Democratic Leader – Previous Questions, 10/23/15]

Pearce has fought child access prevention laws since 1999.

  • 1999: Pearce voted against the “Children and Firearms Safety Act.”The law would have required firearms dealers to provide safety locks and required owners to safeguard guns from children. [HB 239 1999]
  • 2006: Pearce Supported Overturning Law Requiring Child Safety Locks on Handguns. In 2006, Pearce voted in favor of an amendment to overturn a recently enacted law requiring safety trigger locks on all handguns sold in the United States. In 2005, President Bush signed legislation giving gun makers broad protections from civil lawsuits, but that law contained the mandatory trigger lock provision. The amendment reversed the trigger lock provision. [Reuters, 6/29/06] The amendment passed 230-191. [HR 5672, Vote #343, 6/28/06]

Pearce supports letting domestic abusers keep firearms.

  • New Mexico had the third highest rate of men killing women, and more than half of these intimate partner victims are killed with a firearm.
  • 2011: Pearce Voted Against a Motion that Would Prevent Concealed Weapons for Stalkers and Abusers. Pearce voted against a motion that prevented the forced recognition if the permit carrier had been convicted of a sex offense against a minor; had a restraining order for harassing, stalking or threatening loved ones, partners or the children of partners; or if the attorney general had determined them suspected to be, engaged in, or supported terrorism. [CQ Floor Votes, 11/17/11] The motion failed 161-263. [HR 822, Vote #851, 11/16/11]

Pearce voted 20 times to let suspected terrorists purchase firearms.

And he doesn’t think states should have any leeway to pass reasonable gun laws.

  • In August 2017, Pearce Sponsored “Reciprocity” Legislation that Would Undermine New Mexico’s Training and Screening Standards for People Seeking Concealed Carry Licenses. According to the Los Alamos Monitor, “With members of Congress returning home for August recess, Americans for Responsible Solutions on warned that concealed carry “reciprocity” legislation would undermine New Mexico’s rigorous training and screening standards for people seeking to obtain licenses so they can carry concealed handguns. Robin Lloyd, director of government affairs for Americans for Responsible Solutions, warned that as many as 25 other states do not meet New Mexico’s requirements for background checks and firearms safety training for people authorized to carry concealed weapons. New Mexico could be forced to allow unverified people from other states to carry concealed guns in public places under the proposed legislation, according to a flier distributed by the group. [Los Alamos Monitor, 8/2/17]

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