Gun control advocates blast Sununu over vetoes

CONCORD, N.H. (WCAX) Supporters of gun control spoke out at the New Hampshire Statehouse Monday in response to Gov. Chris Sununu's veto of three bills. Our Adam Sullivan learned more about those demonstrators, including one gun safety advocate starting her senior year of high school.

When issuing the vetoes Friday, Sununu, R-New Hampshire, released a statement saying the bills would only restrict the constitutional rights of law-abiding New Hampshire citizens.

Monday, a group of those citizens gathered to say that is not acceptable. With signs in hand, supporters of the bills expressed outrage at Sununu's vetoes. Ruby Carr, 17, was one of them.

"I'm scared and I think a lot of my peers are scared," she said.

Carr is going into her senior year of high school and has been advocating for tighter gun regulations in the Granite State since the Parkland school shooting.

"Our school has a policy during our lockdown drills that we don't go through the entire drill and only the teachers know exactly what to do during the situation because it could be one of us," Carr said.

The three bills would have established background checks on all sales, waiting periods to receive a gun after a purchase and created gun-free zones at schools.

In a statement released after the vetoes, Sununu said, "Our focus as a nation must be on addressing the root causes of hate and violence." It went on to say: "Here in New Hampshire, we have taken multiple steps to address our mental health needs and to build a more welcoming and tolerant state."

But gun control supporters say more needs to be done.

"Governor Sununu is holding us back from making progress on public safety for our children and our families and our communities," said Sen. Dan Feltes, D-Concord.

Others fully support the governor.

"We have one of the safest states in the nation," said Kate Day of Spofford.

Day said it's the Democrats who should actually be ashamed for sending the bills to the governor's desk only days after two recent mass shootings in Texas and Ohio.

"And they decide to take advantage of a public tragedy. I just think it is disgusting and deplorable what they did," she said.

As for Carr, she says she plans to keep up the fight while she worries about the future.

"I just try not to think about it on a daily basis," she said.

None of the bills passed with a veto-proof majority, however, that official vote will take place in mid-September. Lawmakers say if they are unable to override the governor's vetoes, they will be reintroducing the legislation the next session.