BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — Congressman Chris Jacobs (R-NY27) held a press conference Friday to promote legislation he plans to introduce to get more school resource officers in schools across the country.
While speaking with reporters at the event, he addressed why he was not present in Buffalo after the mass shooting at Tops on Jefferson Avenue on May 14.
Jacobs clarified why he has stayed away, saying in part "some people criticized me that I wasn’t at the site of the crime that day. My view on that was I don’t have the honor right now of representing the east side of Buffalo or the City of Buffalo. I believe that that was where those governing should be doing their important work. I believe I would have been equally criticized for trying to politically grandstand.”
Jacobs continued on to say he has not talked to any of the victims’ families yet, but he did reach out to Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown in the immediate aftermath offering his help if it was needed. He also said he has also spoken with Rep. Brian Higgins (D-NY26) who represents the area.
After receiving questions about his lack of presence in Buffalo after the Tops shooting, Congressman Jacobs clarifies why he has stayed away. I pressed him about what he has done behind the scenes to help the community. His full comment & response to my question here: pic.twitter.com/psXsjZMSfp— Ashley Rowe (@AshleyroweWKBW) May 27, 2022
Jacobs also went on the record saying he would support a series of gun control measures, including banning access to semiautomatic rifles like AR-15s, restricting magazine capacity to 10 rounds, and raising the minimum age to 21 for a firearm purchase.
“If an assault weapons ban bill came to the floor that would ban something like an AR-15, I would vote for it," said Jacobs.
The congressman says he’s pro-second Amendment but says “no constitutional right is unlimited.”
"I think it's perfectly reasonable that the age limit, at least for these highly lethal, high capacity semiautomatic weapons should be 21," said Jacobs.
Congressman Jacobs also supports raising the minimum age to purchase a firearm to 21. He acknowledges he’s pro 2nd Amendment, but says “no constitutional right is unlimited.” Here he is explaining why he believes 21 is an appropriate minimum age. (2/3) pic.twitter.com/k2EiubpIug— Ashley Rowe (@AshleyroweWKBW) May 27, 2022
In addition, Jacobs says he plans to introduce a bill that would restrict who can have access to body armor and wants to name the bill after Aaron Salter. Salter, the former BPD officer turned security guard engaged with and tried to stop the shooter at Tops, but ultimately lost his life.
New York State Senator Sean Ryan (D-NY) has introduced legislation that requires "relates to requiring that the sale or delivery of body vests occur in person." You can find more information here.