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Thursday, January 17, 2013

NRA Now "Very Supportive" of Tighter Background Checks

Posted by on Thu, Jan 17, 2013 at 8:53 AM

See, this is how the political game is played. President Barack Obama proposes more sweeping gun control regulations, and the NRA ends up giving ground on the notion of closing the "gun show loophole":

The president of the National Rifle Association (NRA) on Thursday said that the organization was “generally supportive” of strong background checks on firearm purchasers.

“We want to see the proposal, but as a general proposition, the NRA has been very supportive of doing background checks on purchasers through the instant system and secondly of adding the potentially violently mentally ill to the database,” said NRA chief David Keene in an interview with “CBS This Morning.”

There had been whispers just a few days ago that President Obama would not seek to reinstate the ban on assault weapons. Had he not, no doubt the NRA would be sounding less conciliatory on mandatory background checks for all gun purchases—a proposal a new CBS poll shows that 92 percent of Americans support.

Winning an assault weapons ban will no doubt be a tough battle in Congress, but thanks in part to its inclusion in the president's proposal, the fight to close the gun show loophole appears all but won. Politics!


Comments (7) RSS

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Um... that ground was always theirs to give. What might change, is the ground they made up slipping restrictions on the data, research and enforcement into previous legislation. So really, they are playing a game they already won. Now whether they feel that way or not is another thing. But don't fool yourself into thinking they are actually giving any ground here.
Posted by Bean on January 17, 2013 at 9:08 AM · Report this
At least they are caving on the issue that could really make a difference. The high-cap magazine issue is a red herring that would do nothing to stop gun violence, universal background checks with real teeth would.

BTW: the "assault weapons" ban simply won't go anywhere. You're dreaming if you think the same motherfuckers who are willing to crash the entire US economy in the name ideological purity would yield on this.
Posted by Westside forever on January 17, 2013 at 9:52 AM · Report this
The assault ban is kind of pointless given how easily the industry will evade it, and how many functionally equivalent non-assault guns there are.

Other things with broad support and with more real world effect include the universal background checks, higher taxes on guns and bullets, bans on large clips, making gun owners liable for the crimes committed with their guns, requiring gun sellers to not sell when a person passes the check but is obviously mental, requiring liability insurance for gun owners, etc etc.
Posted by ryanmm on January 17, 2013 at 9:56 AM · Report this
it's a partial win, that lays the groundwork for other things, too. it shows nra not all powerful. yay for obama. too bad he didn't fight for stimulus and jobs as much as for reducing gun deaths, though. see? sometimes taking on the power , you can win, I am sooooooooooooo glad he didn't start the debate by saying he was for responsible bipartisan gun reforms, and giving in before the power playing started. this time. this is the only issue on which he's really stood tall instead of being an overly compromising weak negotiator.
Posted by oh, debt ceiling too on January 17, 2013 at 9:58 AM · Report this
@2: Why do you say addressing high-capacity magazines would do nothing? To my mind, from a tactical standpoint, number of rounds available to fire seems like the primary limiting factor in the kind of massacre we're ostensibly trying to prevent. Granted, a shooter could simply carry more magazines, but I think we could find ways to address that. Is that your objection, or am I missing something? (NOTE: I am being sincere and not trying to get into a slap-fight here.)
Posted by Ben on January 17, 2013 at 10:58 AM · Report this
@5 I say it because the vast majority of shooting deaths are not done with weapons with 30 round magazines. Personally, I don't really care if high cap mags are banned or not. What does bother me is the assumption that this will make a difference. I will concede that mass shooters may be less efficient if they can't get high cap mags, but that does nothing to address the kind of gun death that is much more common--murders by violent criminals using handguns. Banning these mags would have no impact at all on the 500+ murders Chicago experienced last year. In Seattle we experienced a rash of murders, none of which were committed with assault weapons.

Here's the question I can't answer: why do we focus so hard on the hardware side of the question, and not the software? Is it because we all agree that we can do nothing to prevent the mentally ill, the poor, the disenfranchised, and the criminally-minded from acting out violently?
Posted by Westside forever on January 17, 2013 at 11:37 AM · Report this
@6: I absolutely agree with you on the software issue, which is why I was so glad to see it at least addressed in the 23-point thing the administration released. Maybe it's that the software side of things requires much more systemic changes, while the hardware side of things can be addressed a lot more simply?
Posted by Ben on January 17, 2013 at 12:39 PM · Report this

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