Statement by the President: Gun Buybacks (7/30/00)
                              THE WHITE HOUSE

                       Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release                                 July 30, 2000

                        STATEMENT BY THE PRESIDENT

     I am pleased that Secretary Cuomo and the Department of Housing and
Urban Development (HUD) are moving forward with their successful Gun
Buyback Initiative.  By teaming up law enforcement, local authorities, and
citizens in the fight to reduce gun violence, the HUD Gun Buyback Program
has already helped remove over 17,000 guns from our communities.  Today's
announcement that Buyback America will continue to ensure the removal of
thousands more guns, preventing an untold number of gun accidents, suicides
and crimes.  Despite HUD's clear authority to carry out this important
program, the gun lobby and other opponents of common sense gun safety
measures continue to challenge this initiative.  We remain committed to
carrying out Buyback America, and I call on HUD to continue to offer this
vital assistance to communities seeking our support in addressing their
local gun violence problems.

     HUD's gun buybacks are an important part of my Administration's
comprehensive strategy to reduce gun violence in America. While we are
making progress in this fight, gun violence remains far too high.  Congress
can do its part by finally passing the stalled common sense gun safety
legislation to keep guns out of the hands of criminals and children, and
fully funding my $280 million Gun Enforcement Initiative to crack down on
gun criminals.  Congress should put the public safety interests of American
families above those of the gun lobby and support these efforts instead of
working to undermine them.  If we work together, we can continue to bring
down gun crime, reduce gun violence, and save lives.


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