Posted to Facebook – January 11, 2012
To My Facebook Friends and Facebook Community:
First and foremost, THANK YOU for all your kind words, positive comments and encouragement regarding my support for protecting the Second Amendment Constitutional freedoms of all New Yorkers. Whether you agree or disagree with my position on this issue, I respect and appreciate everyone who makes their voice heard and takes part in our democratic process.
For the record – as many of you are already aware – I do NOT support the new restrictive gun control measures Governor Cuomo called for during his 2013 State of the State Address on Wednesday. I believe that enacting potentially unconstitutional and costly new gun control mandates are not the answer to keeping New Yorkers safe.
Instead of eroding the Second Amendment Constitutional freedoms of law-abiding gun owners (which I am proudly one of), we need to crack down on dangerous career criminals who use firearms in the commission of a crime, and also focus on keeping firearms out of the hands of seriously mentally ill individuals who pose a clear and present danger to themselves and others.
Regarding the interview I did yesterday with WRGB-TV (CBS 6), the following is some information I wanted you all to be aware of. Read the facts and decide for yourself:
• During my initial interview with WRGB after Governor Cuomo’s State of the State Address had concluded (after being asked what I was hearing from constituents on the gun control issue) when I answered that it was “99.6%” of constituents who had expressed their opposition to further gun control, I was referring to communications received prior to the speech – in other words the constituents who had called, e-mailed, or written our office. I was NOT referring to the entire 43rd Senate District. If that came across as somehow unclear – and obviously, to some it did – that was not my intention! As your Senator, I will ALWAYS tell you the truth: you may not agree with my position on every issue, but you will know where I stand – and I will respond honestly;
• By the time of my interview Thursday, our office had received/logged approximately 151 constituent contacts regarding the Second Amendment. Of those contacts, we received 115 pro-Second Amendment e-mails and letters, and 24 pro-Second Amendment phone calls (by “pro-Second Amendment,” I am referring to messages that either called for protecting the Second Amendment, opposing the Governor’s new gun control proposals, or both). We also received 10 pro-gun control e-mails and one pro-gun control phone call (we also had another caller who did not state a position). To the best of our counting, our office had received these communications by the time of the interview. The WRGB piece mistakenly indicated that we had received 125 total communications on this issue. Again, keep in mind that these figures did NOT include Facebook comments;
• After my interview (which ended at approximately 2 p.m.), our office received 15 new phone calls from individuals who were pro-Second Amendment and strongly opposed many of the gun control measures that the Governor called for. We also heard from two constituents (via phone) who supported further gun control. Our office also received another (new) 56 e-mails in support of the Second Amendment and another 25 e-mails in support of the Governor’s gun control measures. All of these constituent contacts had come in after my interview was recorded.
To the best of our accounting, these are the facts and represent the views and opinions of individuals across the 43rd Senate District who have contacted our legislative office thus far. I realize this is an awful lot of information (and a very lengthy post!) but I thought it was important to share with you. Without question, this is a very polarizing issue and people on both sides certainly have strong feelings.
As State Senator for the 43rd District, I want you to know my position: I will continue to be a strong supporter of the Second Amendment Constitutional freedoms of all New Yorkers. I represent everyone and will always afford everyone – even those who disagree with me – the respect they deserve. You are my constituents and it is truly an honor to serve you.
Going forward, I hope you will continue making your voices heard and your views known. Please continue posting on my Facebook page and feel free to call our office at (518) 455-2381, or send an e-mail to my official Senate e-mail at: email@example.com.
Thanks for reading!