With Historic, 26-Hour Sit-In on House Floor, Butterfield Tells House Republicans: No Bill, No Break

In a historic move to demand life-saving action from Congress, Congressman G. K. Butterfield (NC-01) joined House Democrats’ 26-hour sit-in on the House Floor to protest Speaker Paul Ryan and House Republicans’ refusal to allow a vote on bipartisan legislation to address gun violence.  During the sit-in, House Republicans recessed the House of Representatives without bringing gun violence prevention legislation up for a vote. 

“Standing up for a 30-second moment of silence on the House Floor when a mass shooting takes place in our country is not enough. The gun violence issue has become a crisis, and the solution is simple- Congress must act now to address gun violence with a vote on commonsense, bipartisan legislation,” said Butterfield.  “Yesterday was a great day for democracy. Republican leadership may have tried to shut down the Floor and turn off the cameras in the chamber, but our historic sit-in delivered a strong message from the American people: No Bill, No Break.”

House Democrats sat-in for 26 hours on the House Floor to demand that Speaker Ryan and House Republicans allow an immediate vote on bipartisan, commonsense gun violence prevention legislation to help keep guns out of dangerous hands, with two bills:

  • The bipartisan King-Thompson legislation to expand and strengthen our background check system;
  • The bipartisan ‘No Fly, No Buy’ bill to keep guns out of the hands of suspected terrorists.  House Republicans have voted 14 times to block consideration of the bipartisan ‘No Fly, No Buy’ legislation.  

But in the dead of the night – and in the middle of House Democrats’ ‘No Bill, No Break’ sit-in – Republican Leaders adjourned the House for the Fourth of July congressional recess, leaving Washington D.C. without bringing these bipartisan gun violence prevention bills to the floor for an up or down vote.

“With this sit-in, our message was heard. We will not tolerate more moments of silence for the victims of gun violence without action to prevent the next tragedy,” concluded Butterfield.  “Sit or stand, House Democrats will not rest, and we will not be silent, until Congress acts.”