Ralph Northam and Tom Perriello each released statements today (see below) — the day before the 10th anniversary of the Virginia Tech massacre. Tragically, since April 16, 2007, there have been many more mass shootings, and yet the NRA and the gun industry more broadly have blocked any action to prevent future ones. No matter how pro-gun forces try to claim that “guns save lives” and other nonsense, we know that today, more than ever, we need serious measures to prevent gun violence. Let’s make sure that this November here in Virginia, we elect people who will push those measures through, and UNelect people (e.g., Republicans in the Virginia House of Delegates, Ed Gillespie) who won’t.
RELEASE: Northam for Governor Releases “Andy” Video
Richmond, VA – Today, the Northam for Governor campaign released “Andy”, an online video featuring Andy Goddard, father of Colin Goddard, a student who was wounded in the Virginia Tech Massacre in 2007. With the ten year anniversary of the tragedy approaching, Goddard shares the story of how he came to know Ralph during his advocacy for commonsense gun safety in Richmond.
In the video, Goddard remarks, “I support Ralph Northam unquestionably. For the first time that I met him, he heard that I was going to speak and instead of leaving, he stayed behind to hear what I was saying. And the wonderful thing about Ralph Northam is that he has been good on this issue from the beginning.”
See the video below:
Tom Perriello Statement Commemorating Ten Year Anniversary of Virginia Tech Massacre
Ahead of the tenth anniversary of the Virginia Tech massacre on Sunday, Tom Perriello, Democratic candidate for governor of Virginia, released the following statement:
“Ten years ago, 32 people were murdered in Blacksburg at the hands of a mass shooter. Families lost children, parents, loved ones. The Virginia Tech community lost instructors and colleagues – fallen heroes gunned down while barricading doors so that other students could escape to safety. It was the deadliest mass shooting in the history of our nation at the time, and those losses are still felt today by families and communities across our Commonwealth.
“Over the years and through my travels across this state, I have been moved and transformed by the stories of loss, of heroism, and of healing from those changed forever by that fateful day in Blacksburg a decade ago. Survivors have found reservoirs of strength I cannot fathom to turn tragedy into something constructive – a citizen movement for gun reform. Our communities and our Commonwealth are safer today because these brave advocates have demanded action. Some leaders, including myself, took too long to hear their calls for progress. But together we will fight to ensure that no parent in the future has to hear those terrifying phone calls so many received on that fateful day. It is beyond time for universal background checks to keep guns out of the hands of criminals and those suffering from mental illness; to fully fund our mental health care system in Virginia; to end default gun sales that allow people to get guns without a completed background check; to embrace smart gun technology; and to limit high capacity magazines and assault weapons that enable these massacres.
“While this weekend is for remembrance, we should also celebrate the progress on campus safety and gun safety produced by thousands of Virginians touched by these tragic events. It has changed opinions, changed laws, and galvanized communities to take seriously an issue that takes too many lives, for no reason. Now we must honor the memory of those lost by continuing this fight – changing more minds and more hearts and passing laws and taking actions that can help prevent more tragedies like this one.”
Tom Perriello will attend the university commemoration at the April 16 Memorial at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg on Sunday at 2:30pm.