Former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, who survived a gun shot wound to the head during a mass shooting in Tucson, Az., two years ago, urged Congress to "be bold," and "courageous" in passing new gun laws, at a dramatic hearing on gun safety Wednesday.
"Speaking is difficult, but i need to say something important," the Arizona Democrat told the Senate Judiciary Committee in nationally televised testimony. "Violence is a big problem. Too many children are dying. Too many children. We must do something. It will be hard. But the time is now. You must act. Be bold. Be courageous. Americans are counting on you. Thank you."
Giffords' husband, astronaut Mark Kelly, testified about the need for stricter background checks for gun owners. National Rifle Association executive vice president Wayne LaPierre submitted testmony saying "proposing more gun control laws - while failing to enforce the thousands that we already have - is not a serious solution to reducing crime," NPR reported.
President Obama recently proposed a comprehensive plan to reduce gun violence including universal background checks, and a ban on assault weapons and high capacity magazines, following up on a promise to take "meaningful action" after last month's massacre at an elementary school in Newtown, Conn. that took the lives of 20 small children, and eight adults including the shooter.