A group of local activists came to U.S. Rep. Mark Sanford's Beaufort office Tuesday morning with one request: Champion stricter gun regulations.
Although the group was small -- four women and one man -- each said they represented hundreds of constituents who support the Everytown for Gun Safety movement, a coalition of several organizations backing universal background checks, concealed-carry bans in restaurants and bars, and other policies.
The group, members of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, delivered 1,200 postcards to Sanford's office, each bearing the name and address of a resident in his district. The cards read "not one more," adopting the words of Richard Martinez, whose son was one of 6 people killed during a gunman's rampage May 23 near the campus of UC-Santa Barbara in Isla Vista, Calif. The deadly spree ended when the gunman killed himself.
Sanford was not at his office Tuesday, but staff members accepted the postcards.
Residents signed up to send the postcards on the Moms Demand Action, Everytown or Mayors Against Illegal Guns websites.
Cheryl Kanuck, a spokesperson for the Sun City Hilton Head chapter of Moms Demand Action and former gun owner, said she wants to see smarter gun regulation, not necessarily more bans.
Pamela Brandon of Lady's Island, another group member, said her household has guns. However, she continues to worry about the violence that results from guns falling into the wrong hands.
She said she had been threatened with a gun during a previous relationship.
"It stays with you your whole life," she said.
She also said she had several cousins who died from gun violence.
"I'm concerned for the kids, and for all humans," she said.
Through a staff spokesman, Sanford said he was looking forward to reading the postcards.
"However, it's unlikely that current leadership in the House will bring gun control legislation to a vote before November, so my plan right now is to keep listening to people on both sides of the debate," he said.
Kanuck said she hoped Sanford would take the group's message to heart, noting the representative is running unopposed in the upcoming election.
"This is a life-saving issue," she said. "He's in a safe position to be kind of courageous and do something that makes sense."
Follow reporter Rebecca Lurye at twitter.com/IPBG_Rebecca.
- Local Democratic club petitions against guns in bars, restaurants, April 18, 2014
- Guns and alcohol don't mix, Beaufort County bar owners say, February 8, 2014