News Column

NRA Chief: Assault-weapons Ban Not Likely

Jan 14, 2013

A U.S. assault-weapons ban will likely not become law, the National Rifle Association's chief said, as Vice President Joe Biden readied gun-violence curb ideas.

"I would say that the likelihood is that they are not going to be able to get an assault-weapons ban through this Congress," NRA President David Keene told CNN's "State Of the Union."

At the same time, Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., told the program from Newtown, Conn., where 20 elementary school children and six adults were killed Dec. 14, Keene misjudged the prospects of new gun-control legislation passing Congress.

"Newtown fundamentally changed things. And the NRA just does not get this," Murphy said.

Their comments Sunday came as an Obama administration task force led by Biden prepared to offer concrete policy recommendations on curbing gun violence.

Biden said last week the task force expected to make the recommendations to President Barack Obama Tuesday.

The group has looked at a wide range of influences linked to gun crimes, including violent video games and movies, and examined background checks and mental-health issues tied to gun sales.

Obama has called for the creation of a federal assault weapons ban similar to the Public Safety and Recreational Firearms Use Protection Act passed by Congress Sept. 13, 1994. That law expired 10 years later.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., has said she will soon introduce such a ban on assault rifles and high-capacity magazines.

But Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., an NRA member, told the CNN program an "assault weapons standalone ban on just guns alone, in the political reality that we have today, will not go anywhere. It has to be comprehensive."

Source: Copyright United Press International 2013

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