The Washington Post
Democrat lawmakers plan to formally reintroduce a bill Thursday that would ban military-style assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines, the most ambitious -- and politically risky -- element of proposals unveiled by President Obama to limit gun violence.
The "Assault Weapons Ban of 2013″ is similar to one passed in 1994 that expired with little protest in 2004. The measure will be unveiled Thursday morning by a slate of Democrat co-sponsors, led by longtime gun control advocates Sen. Dianne Feinstein (Calif.) and Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (N.Y.), who have pushed for the ban before in part because of their personal histories with gun violence.
The bill is a far-reaching attempt to rein in the use of such weapons by prohibiting the sale, transfer and manufacturing of more than 100 specific weapons, including certain semiautomatic rifles, handguns and shotguns that can hold detachable magazines or hold more than 10 rounds of ammunition. Aides said Wednesday that sponsors were still sorting out specific details of the bill to make the package as politically tenable as possible.
But supporters face an uphill climb in a Congress stacked with Republicans and moderate Democrats who support Second Amendment rights...Regardless, Feinstein and McCarthy plan to press ahead.
"I understand how difficult this is," Feinstein said in a recent interview. "That doesn't mean we shouldn't try."
"The trick is to do it in a prudent way that works, and that's difficult to do," she added. "And the trick also is to do it in a way that stops the manufacture, sale and transfer but doesn't remove weapons from people, but encourages those weapons to be the product of people who've had their background checks, who are law-abiding and have their trigger locks."
Most Americans support tough new measures to counter gun violence, including banning assault weapons, according to the latest Washington Post-ABC News poll. In the poll, 58 percent of Americans support the ban, which expired in 2004 after 10 years; 39 percent oppose it. Some 45 percent of gun-owning households also support the ban.
McCarthy, whose husband was killed and son wounded in the 1993 Long Island Railroad shooting, has reintroduced the weapons ban every year since it expired. She said her office has received much more support for her efforts since the deadly shooting at an elementary school in Newtown, CT, that killed 26 people, including 20 children...
Feinstein, who became San Francisco mayor in 1978 after the assassinations of Mayor George Moscone and Supervisor Harvey Milk, said she has voiced her displeasure with Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-NV) after he recently told a Nevada television station that, given the current political environment, it might be futile to move an assault weapons ban through Congress.
Since then, Reid has sounded more open to gun control measures...
House Republican leaders say they won't consider any gun-related legislation until the Senate takes action. This week, Sens. Patrick J. Leahy (D-VT) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) unveiled plans to make gun trafficking and straw purchases a federal crime, and Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) relaunched plans to close a loophole in federal law that permits gun buyers to purchase weapons without a federal background check from private gun dealers and to ban high-capacity magazines holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition.
The proposals will be considered next Wednesday at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on gun control. Leahy, who chairs the panel, has said he's eager to consider a wide range of proposals before moving legislation through the Senate.
READ FULL SOURCE ARTICLE: 01/24/2013
The BasicsProject.org informational and educational pamphlet series is now available for Kindle and iPad. Click here to find out more...
The New Media Journal and BasicsProject.org are not funded by outside sources. We exist exclusively on tax deductible donations from our readers and contributors.
Please make a tax deductible donation today.