UPDATE 4:10 pm – I received the following statement from Del. Paul Krizek (D-Fairfax).
“As a member of the Crime Commission I can tell you that I was extremely disappointed to read the Commission’s report on Mass Killings and Gun Violence that essentially punts on making any legislative recommendations regarding this serious problem. However, it must be acknowledged that the Crime Commission staff were in the unenviable position of having to defer to the Republican leadership. The report claimed that the data is inconclusive or insufficient, and yet, did not recommend, at the very least, where the gaps are in data collection, which would have been helpful going forward. Nevertheless, I am confident that our new Democratic majority will tackle gun violence head on with real policy changes that will save lives.”
What on earth? I mean, obviously Virginia Republicans were never serious about looking into the causes and potential solutions to gun violence, so why did they even bother going through the charade of conducting a “study” in the first place? But then, having lost the 11/5 elections in significant part because of their worthlessness on this issue (and most other issues), why even bother releasing this…whatever it is? In sum:
- “A systematic review of the events that occurred in Virginia Beach on May 31, 2019, was not able to be completed”
- The “Crime Commission” staff says that it “examined relevant literature and reports”; “reviewed the laws of Virginia, numerous other states, and the federal government”; “requested and analyzed relevant data”; “consulted with subject-matter experts”; attended a “Congressional briefing on mass shootings”; etc.
- The results of all that work? Yep, you guessed it: “inconclusive evidence exists to develop recommendations.” Great, eh?
- Oh, but the commission reassures us: “The absence of recommendations should not be interpreted as meaning that no changes to Virginia’s laws are necessary, but rather that any changes are policy decisions which can only be made by the General Assembly.”
In sum, this Republican-controlled “commission” was always a complete sham, but prior to the 11/5 elections, Republicans were hoping that at least a few voters would actually buy into the charade that they were serious. Now, having lost both the House of Delegates and State Senate -in part due to voter anger at Republican inaction on gun violence – apparently Republicans have concluded there’s no reason to pretend otherwise. Fortunately, Republicans will not be in charge in Richmond for much longer, and Democrats can actually get some serious work done…as opposed to this Republican worthlessness.