Press Releases

Frankel To Bring Mother of Newtown Victim as State of the Union Guest

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Boca Raton, FL, February 11, 2013 | comments

Congresswoman Lois Frankel (FL-22) will bring the mother of a Newtown victim as her guest to Tuesday’s State of the Union. Frankel’s guest, Lynn McDonnell is the mother of Grace, 7, who died tragically in the Newtown massacre. Lynn McDonnell’s husband Chris will attend the State of the Union with Congresswoman Gloria Negrete McLeod of California.

“Like so many Americans I have been inspired and moved by the families who lost loved ones in the Newtown tragedy,” Frankel said. “When I look into the eyes of Newtown parents like Lynn and Chris McDonnell, I want to be able to tell them that our kids should have the freedom to be safe at school and that our Congress is ready to pass meaningful laws that will help prevent future gun violence tragedies.”

When President Obama announced his proposals to reduce gun violence last month, he spoke about how Grace’s parents, Lynn and Chris McDonnell gave him one of Grace’s paintings. The President said Grace’s painting is now hanging in his private study just off the Oval Office and “every time I look at that painting, I think about Grace and I think about the life that she lived and the life that lay ahead of her. And most of all, I think about when it comes to protecting the most vulnerable among us, we must act now for Grace, for the 25 other innocent children and devoted educators who had so much left to give.”

The McDonnell’s did an interview with CNN’s Anderson Cooper shortly after the Newtown massacre and later Lynn wrote Cooper a note that he shared on-air and it read in part, “I’m going to take on the world for our Gracie girl, for I myself have nothing to lose and everything to gain.”

Frankel has said it’s time to take common-sense steps to reduce gun violence. Frankel serves on the congressional Gun Violence Prevention Task Force and is co-sponsoring several measures aimed at curbing gun violence including: a ban on high capacity magazines; requiring criminal background checks for all firearms purchased at gun shows; banning assault weapons; requiring universal background checks and closing loopholes that allow gun purchasers to avoid a background check altogether; and strengthening mental health programs.



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