SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. -- Former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, and her husband, Captain Mark Kelly, will be at the Saratoga Springs City Center Sunday, visiting the NEACA Arms Fair.
“I think it's a testimony certainly to her and to him, but also to what the City Center and the city of Saratoga Springs has been able to do in making sure that we're doing it the right way,” said Mark Baker, President of the Saratoga Springs City Center.
It will be the first Arms Fair she's visited since she was shot back in 2011.
“They can now look and see beyond that tragedy to how do we make it better,” said Baker.
Escorted by Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, the three will be observing how New York State is fixing the loophole when it comes to background checks at gun shows. There is no federal requirement to do so. However Schneiderman has worked with all gun show operators in New York to implement strict, new rules to track sales at gun shows.
“We hope to show her a well-run event and how we control our firearms to make sure people who should have guns can have guns, and those who shouldn't have guns won't have guns,” said David Petronis, President of the NEACA and the show’s promoter.
Giffords and Kelly, both gun owners and Second Amendment advocates, have said they believe background checks should be done at all gun shows. Petronis, who requires them at his shows, agrees.
“There's no problem with us doing background checks to make sure that we're not selling it to a criminal or so forth,” said Petronis.
While Petronis said he may not agree with everything that Giffords, Kelly and Schneiderman believe, he said he knows this is a step in the right direction for both groups to see the issues within the American gun debate more clearly.
“Their politics may not be the same as my politics right now but we're not a group of crazy people here. We can all get along and if we talk sensibly to each other and we're all reasonable, things can get done,” said Petronis.
Officials anticipate a larger crowd than usual for Sunday. They said extra security and safety precautions will be taken.