Washington, D.C., July 12, 2018 – Yesterday, Republicans on the House Appropriations Committee voted to deny the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention $10 million in the 2019 federal budget to conduct research on gun violence despite a March spending bill noting that the agency was authorized to do so. The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence sharply criticized members of the committee, noting that no other public health crisis would be denied funding for over two decades.
“It is nothing short of ludicrous for House Republicans to deny funding - even a request as conservative as $10 million out of what will be a budget of over $4 trillion - to study and understand gun violence as the public health crisis it is,” stated Kris Brown, co-president of the Brady Campaign. “In the aftermath of the Parkland shooting this past spring, we finally had a flicker of hope that the Dickey Amendment was repealed and done with. And now, as so many of us feared, that hope has been snuffed out. This is appalling, and we demand that this charade come to an end at last.”
The amendment, proposed by Rep. Nita Lowey (D-NY), would have earmarked $10 million for competitive grants for gun violence research as part of the House’s Labor-HHS-Education spending bill for the 2019 fiscal year. The amendment was voted down on a party line vote, 32-20, with Rep. Tom Cole (R-OK) telling POLITICO that “I don’t want to spend my time on the floor… in a gun control debate.”
“It’s been 22 years since the CDC has studied gun violence, with more than a half million Americans shot and killed since,” added Brady co-president Avery Gardiner. “It’s simply astounding that House Republicans can’t be bothered to ‘spend their time’ discussing a crisis that kills 96 Americans every day. There’s no other public health crisis that’s denied the funding just to study and understand it. To those standing in the way of this important funding - do your jobs or step aside. It’s costing us our lives.”
The 2018 federal budget proposed by the Trump administration earmarked $4.094 trillion in total expenditures. $10 million would represent 0.0000024% of that budget. American lives are worth more than that.
Brady has one powerful mission — to unite all Americans against gun violence. We work across Congress, the courts, and our communities with over 90 grassroots chapters, bringing together young and old, red and blue, and every shade of color to find common ground in common sense. In the spirit of our namesakes Jim and Sarah Brady, we have fought for over 45 years to take action, not sides, and we will not stop until this epidemic ends. It’s in our hands.