The man who withstood a $40 million attack campaign against him in 2012 to secure his second term in the U.S. Senate was in Columbus Tuesday to outline his bill that would provide grants to states and law enforcement agencies for antiterrorism programs and training for active shooter incident response.
Sherrod Brown, Ohio’s senior senator in Washington, was joined by Columbus public safety officials, including City of Columbus Public Safety Director George Speaks, to discuss how central Ohio first responders would use resources to prepare for threats.
Brown Battles Terrorism With Local Law Enforcement
Gathered yesterday morning at the James G Jackson Police Academy, Sen. Brown, who has a seat on the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs, outlined legislation that would help keep Americans safe from ISIS and other terrorist threats. With two years left until his second term ends, Sen. Brown renewed his call for closing the terrorist gun loophole to stop individuals who are known terrorists from purchasing a firearm.
“We need to ensure that those on the frontlines protecting us have the tools they need to respond to threats and keep Americans safe and secure,” Sen. Brown said in prepared remarks. “That’s why I’m sponsoring legislation to keep Americans safe from ISIS and other potential threats. We must use every available resource to combat the threat posed by extremists with access to deadly weapons.”
Mr. Brown went on record in support of the executive actions taken by President Obama to close gun loopholes including background checks for all gun buyers, regardless who they purpose a firearm from. In stark contrast to what Ohio Gov. John Kasich had to say on what the White House announced yesterday, that the executives actions would “poison the well” on guns laws, Sen. Brown stood firmly behind the president’s actions, calling them “commonsense steps.”
“You don’t just shove these things down their throat,” Gov. Kasich said, as he figures out how to become relevant in the GOP race for president. “All you’re doing is further poisoning the well. You have got to be able to get along with people who are the lawmakers and not just take it into your own hands, no matter how frustrated you get.” Kasich is well know for not getting along with people, especially anyone who dares disagree with his largely false narrative of how the world works, from deficit spending and balanced budgets to job creation, protecting women’s rights and being the kind of uniter he says he is but his record shows he’s not.
“In the wake of recent attacks in Paris and San Bernardino, it is clear that all local police forces need to be prepared to respond to the kind of pre-meditated and chaotic attacks that terrorists like ISIS and others are motivated to carry out,” Director Speaks said. He added that the sophisticated training, technology, and human resources needed to combat these threats can come at a significant cost to local communities. “The new grants authorized in Senator Brown’s legislation would give communities like Columbus the resources needed to maintain a police force that is not only able to keep our streets safe for residents on a day to day basis, but is also prepared to respond to terrorist attacks.”
Will Times’ Editorial Board Ask Kasich Brown’s Question?
Asked what question he would submit to the New York Times editorial board in advance of its anticipated audience with Gov. Kasich sometime this week, Sen. Brown said he would like Mr. Kasich to explain why he’s taken billions from local governments, forcing them to tap local taxpayers to fund the gap to continue vital services like EMS, Fire and Police.
Brown Bill Details
- Restricting ISIS’ access to money by authorizing tough new sanctions on foreign financial institutions if they knowingly facilitate financial transactions with ISIS.
- Helping refugees fleeing the conflict in Syria stay in the region closer to their own homes by creating a new stabilization fund for Jordan and Lebanon.
- Improving intelligence sharing with American allies and partners.
- Developing a comprehensive strategy to counter ISIS propaganda and counter violent-extremism.
- Creating a new ISIS “czar” who would direct the United States’ efforts to defeat ISIS.
- Requiring the universal use of machine-readable, electronic passports in order to participate in the Visa Waiver Program.
- Stopping individuals who are known or suspected terrorists—including those on the “No Fly” list—from purchasing a gun by closing the terrorist gun loophole.
- Improving screening technology and Transportation Security Officers (TSOs) training – including tougher vetting and oversight of aviation workers – to strengthen aviation security.
- Developing a strategy for locking down the highest risk radiological material – or “dirty bomb” materials – in our hospitals and industrial sites.
- Creating a new office dedicated to stopping homegrown extremism at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
- Improving our ability to intercept terrorist communications.
- Authorizing new grants to help state and local law enforcement develop and implement antiterrorism training programs to properly respond to an active shooter attack.
- Sen. Brown remains in the Democratic minority in the upper chamber in Washington, so action on his bill may come later if at all. Nonetheless, long the voice of working families, he remains the only Democrat elected statewide.
Watch Brown’s Presser