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Cuomo calls on Democratic candidates to support gun safety measures

Cuomo said Democrats must give the American

 Cuomo said Democrats must give the American people a clear alternative to President Trump on the issues of hate and guns. Credit: Howard Schnapp

Responding to mass shootings in Texas and Ohio, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo called on the Democratic presidential candidates on Wednesday to support gun safety measures such as outlawing assault weapons and high-capacity magazines.

Cuomo, a Democrat, also said his party's candidates should support creating a database to block "dangerously" mentally ill individuals from buying guns, enact universal background checks, close a loophole for private gun sales, and pass "red flag" laws barring people "who pose a risk to themselves or others" from purchasing firearms.

In 2013, he said, the Cuomo administration enacted the SAFE Act, which prohibited selling guns to felons and the mentally ill, required private gun sellers to conduct background checks, banned high-capacity magazines and assault weapons, and stiffened penalties for illegal gun use. 

The governor also signed last month a ban on “bump stocks” that allow semi-automatic rifles to fire more bullets rapidly and another measure that extends a waiting period up to 30 days, from three days, that the FBI can take to complete a background check before a firearm sale.

“It is incumbent upon all Democrats to give the American people a clear alternative to President Trump on the issue of hate and guns and end this mass carnage that has become the status quo," Cuomo said in a statement.

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