Congresswoman Duckworth: Congress Should Focus On Keeping America Safe from Terrorists with Guns, Not Helping Fear-Mongers Dismantle American Ideals

Congresswoman calls for immediate vote to close loopholes enabling terrorists to purchase firearms

Washington, DC–(ENEWSPF)–December 11, 2015.  Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth (IL-08) today highlighted the significant national security risks America takes by failing to close the loopholes enabling terrorists to legally purchase and possess firearms in this country and called for an immediate vote to help ensure they can no longer do so. Congressional Leadership has so far refused to allow a vote on bipartisan legislation that would prevent suspected terrorists from purchasing firearms. The Congresswoman is also leading legislation with Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) to close yet another loophole that makes it possible for foreign nationals visiting the United States under the Visa Waiver Program—as one of the 9/11 co-conspirators did—to buy weapons other foreign visitors are barred from purchasing.

“We do not have to choose between protecting our national security and betraying America’s ideals—but we can and must do a better job actually fixing security holes where they exist,” said Congresswoman Duckworth. “Instead of turning our backs on human suffering and refugees fleeing the same terrorists we are fighting—which ultimately weakens our national security by helping ISIL recruit a new generation of terrorists who believe America hates all Muslims—Congress should immediately vote to prevent dangerous terrorists from legally acquiring firearms. It’s time to pass the common-sense Duckworth-Durbin legislation to stop foreign visitors from buying weapons in the United States and the bipartisan bill to close the terrorist gun loophole.”

Congresswoman Duckworth has been a fierce advocate for protecting our national security interests and homeland from terrorism in a way that doesn’t undermine or compromise the values that make our country great. Earlier this week, the bipartisan Visa Waiver Program Improvement and Terrorist Travel Prevention Act that Duckworth championed as a cosponsor passed the House. The legislation will strengthen security measures in the Visa Waiver Program, an important tourism program that helps grow the American economy, create jobs and is supported by President Obama and Congressional Republicans alike because it closes serious security gaps that terrorists could exploit to enter our nation. The Congresswoman also authored an op-ed in the Chicago Tribune last month outlining her position that rejecting all Syrian refugees who are fleeing ISIL will ultimately endanger our national security.