Former congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, who was critically wounded in a shooting at a event in Tucson in Jan. 2011, and her husband, former astronaut Mark Kelly will be in the Northside Independence Day parade Thursday as part of a seven-state "Rights and Responsibilities" tour.
Caleb Faux, executive director of the Hamilton County Democratic Party, said he has been told by officials of Americans for Responsible Solutions, the Super PAC run by Giffords and Kelly, that they will hold a press event in Cincinnati and ride in the Northside parade.
They are stopping primarily in states where senators have voted against universal background checks for those purchasing guns. Ohio's junior senator, Rob Portman, voted against such legislation earlier this year.
Giffords was a House member from Arizona in January 2011 when a gunman fired into a crowd at a public event, apparently intent on assassinating Giffords. She was critically wounded. Six other people died; and 13 more were wounded.
Giffords resigned from Congress in January 2012 to concentrate on her rehabilitation.
In May 2011, her husband was an astronaut aboard the last flight of the space shuttle Endeavor.
In a press release, Kelly said he has "been around guns all my life, and I know that as an American, my right to own a firearm exists hand in hand with my obligation to be a responsible gun owner and to do my part to make sure guns don't fall into the hands of criminals or dangerously mentally ill people."
He called on Portman to "support common sense policies like background checks that are critical to law enforcement and that enhance the rights of gun owners."
When he voted against the gun control bill in April, Portman said he did so because it would make it "more difficult for law-abiding Ohioans to exercise their Constitutionally guaranteed rights."