Newtown families appear in Bloomberg anti-gun ads

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s anti-gun group, Mayors Against Illegal Guns, released two television ads featuring family members of those killed in the December massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., calling for tougher guns laws.

The ads—one is 60 seconds, the other is 90 seconds—feature the relatives talking about their loved ones who were killed and urging political leaders to do something to stop another incident like Newtown from happening.

“I want to prevent any other family from having to go through what we’re going through, “ Chris O’Donnell, father of Grace O’Donnell, a 7-year-old first-grader who was killed at Sandy Hook, says in the ad.

Terri Rousseau, whose daughter Lauren was a teacher at the school and was killed trying to protect her students, adds, “Don’t let the memory of Newtown fade without doing something real.”

They're the first TV ads from Bloomberg’s anti-gun group, and they come just days after the wealthy mayor pledged to spend at least $12 million of his own money to press Congress to enact tougher gun laws. The spots also come three months after 20-year-old Adam Lanza stormed the Newtown elementary school and killed 26 people, including 20 children, before killing himself. He had earlier killed his mother, Nancy, at their nearby home.

(Connecticut state officials on Thursday released the search warrants executed at the Lanza home.)

According to a release, the group’s ads will air in Connecticut, where state lawmakers are debating a change in gun laws in the aftermath of December’s shootings. But it also comes as the group launches a day of national advocacy on Thursday pressing Washington to enact gun-control measures, including limits on the sales of high-capacity gun magazines and stricter background checks. The group is also pressing for a ban on assault weapons—though lawmakers, including Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Democrat, have indicated that would likely kill any potential gun legislation in Congress.

“We cannot afford to wait for another tragedy,” Bloomberg said in a statement announcing the ads. “It’s long past time for elected officials to listen to their constituents and pass reforms like comprehensive background checks that we know will save lives.”