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Posted: 5/10/2003 4:53:43 AM EDT
The Los Angeles Times May 9, 2003 A Fight to Extend Weapons Ban Is Likely Even with the backing of Bush, Feinstein will have a difficult time getting House passage. By Richard Simon http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-guns9may09,1,4141751.story WASHINGTON — One of the first items visitors to Sen. Dianne Feinstein's Capitol Hill office are likely to notice is a pen. Framed and hung prominently on the wall, it was used by President Clinton in 1994 to sign the federal ban on assault weapons — a law, written by Feinstein, that she regards as one of her proudest achievements. But the ban expires next year, and the California Democrat is facing a tough fight in her effort to extend the measure, even though she has an unexpected ally in President Bush. As a presidential candidate in 2000, Bush broke with his gun-lobby allies by coming out in support of extending the ban. On Thursday, Feinstein launched a campaign not only to extend the ban but also to include a provision that would prohibit the import of high-capacity ammunition magazines. Her biggest challenge will be getting the extension passed in the House, where Democrats from rural areas joined the Republican majority in 1996 to vote to repeal the weapons ban. That repeal effort died in the Senate. Acknowledging the battle ahead, Feinstein recalled the long odds against her a decade ago when a colleague said, "You're new here. You don't know what the gunners are going to do to you." Nevertheless, she prevailed. In her latest effort, however, only one Republican, Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island, joined her in formally introducing an extension of the ban. They appeared in a room filled with photographs of the military-style weapons. "Assault weapons are the weapons of choice for criminals and those who are seeking to do the maximum damage possible in the shortest amount of time," Feinstein said. "They are not weapons of choice for hunters or those trying to protect themselves." Feinstein's measure would make permanent the ban on the manufacture and import of 19 types of military-style assault weapons, such as AK-47s. It also would close what she called a loophole in the 1994 law that permits imports of high-capacity ammunition magazines — those holding more than 10 rounds. In the House, similar legislation was introduced Thursday by Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-N.Y.), whose husband was gunned down in 1993 and who was elected to Congress three years later, defeating a Republican who backed the ban's repeal. Her proposal would strengthen the current law by including weapons modified to get around the ban. So far, however, she too has only one Republican co-sponsor, Christopher Shays of Connecticut. Their efforts come as the gun lobby savors a victory in the House, which voted last month to shield gun makers from lawsuits brought by crime victims. That measure stands a good chance of passing the Senate. Sen. Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.), who is co-sponsoring Feinstein's bill, urged Bush to take an active role in pushing for the law's extension. "If the president wants this bill to become law, it will," he said Thursday. White House spokesman Ari Fleischer said Thursday that the president views the extension as "a reasonable step." "Often, the president will agree, of course, with the National Rifle Assn.," Fleischer said. "On this issue, he does not." The emotionally charged debate over gun control has changed dramatically since a spate of high-profile shootings — including the 1999 massacre of 12 students and a teacher at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colo. — prompted a Democratic stampede for new limits on gun purchases. But Democrats took a more cautious approach to the issue after suffering election losses in 2000 that were tied to their push for gun control. "There are a lot more supporters of gun control than opponents, but opponents are more likely to turn out and to vote on this issue," said University of Maryland political scientist Ric Uslaner. The NRA downplayed Bush's support for the ban by saying that it would make its fight in Congress. Still, pro-NRA members of Congress are circulating a letter urging Bush to "defend the Second Amendment" and "help our nation in this time of great need by allowing law-abiding citizens to use the weapon of their choice." In an interview, Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Huntington Beach) said: "Most Republicans believe that if someone has not committed a crime, they should be permitted to own a semi-automatic rifle." But McCarthy said she believes the White House might want to have the ban move rapidly through Congress now, rather than have it come up during an election year. The ban expires Sept. 13, 2004. Feinstein, joined by her California Democratic colleague, Barbara Boxer, recalled the events that led to her initial fight for the ban — a 1993 shooting rampage in a San Francisco office building that left eight people dead and six wounded. The attacker was armed with a .45-caliber Colt semiautomatic pistol and two 9-millimeter TEC-9 Luger semiautomatic pistols and carried more than 600 rounds of ammunition, loaded in clips. "I remember it like it was yesterday," Feinstein said. Seeking passage of the bill, Feinstein, who became mayor of San Francisco after Mayor George Moscone and Supervisor Harvey Milk were shot to death in City Hall in 1978, walked the halls of Congress with gunshot victims, pressing House lawmakers for votes, an unusual practice for a senator. She recruited law enforcement agencies to lobby House members. On Thursday, Feinstein and an NRA spokesman disagreed over whether the legislation had reduced crime. NRA spokesman Andrew Arulanandam asked, "Why should we keep ineffective laws on the books?" According to Feinstein, however, assault weapons accounted for 8.2% of guns used in crimes in 1993. That number had dropped to 3.2% by late 1996, the last date for which figures are available, she said. Feinstein also said she would like to push for stronger gun controls, but "it isn't in the cards right now." "We know that if we push it too far, we'll have no bill," Schumer added.
Link Posted: 5/10/2003 4:56:25 AM EDT
"We know that if we push it too far, we'll have no bill," Schumer added. The anti-gun moto...take them one small step at a time ;) With any luck, Schumer and Feinstein will drive off a bridge w/ fat teddy kennedy soon.
Link Posted: 5/10/2003 5:12:19 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/10/2003 5:16:43 AM EDT by ABNAK]
Okay, let's not call this a THREAT, but instead a PROMISE: ANYONE who supports an AW renewal, be it Bush or members of Congress, will be voted out!!! Who cares if that means the other side gets control? Would they, in fact, be any worse than being stabbed in the back by our own side? A strong message must be sent to these people. Yeah, it might sound like cutting off your nose to spite your face, but there HAS to be repercussions for a renewal vote. Bush is really starting to piss me off on this issue. Does he recall who put him in office? Apparently not. Anymore it seems like our choices are "Democrap" (D) or "Democrap-Lite" (R). It's sickening.
Link Posted: 5/10/2003 5:18:15 AM EDT
Please refer to my sig line. l V
Link Posted: 5/10/2003 7:40:00 AM EDT
Why would Feinstein have to "fight" to pass this? It's a REPUBLICAN-controlled House! Our resident (and intellectually-superior) cynics on the board insist there's no difference between Republicans and Democrats - it's all one big happy gun-grabbing family right? So WHO'S opposing this since it's obviously not the Republicans?
Link Posted: 5/10/2003 8:49:51 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/10/2003 8:51:59 AM EDT by warlord]
This is more upbeat and wishful chest pounding BS from Pravda West. Let face it, gun control is REAL high up, and I mean REAL HIGH UP issue on the Dems priority list, and the Dem leadership don't really care whose political body takes a hit(figurtivily speaking of course - i.e. the political price of who gets voted out of office in the next election cycle). It took a LOT of arm-twisting and shady backroom deals by Bill Clinton to get the original ban passed '94 and only barely, and Bill is no longer president, don't anyone remember. And the political price to be paid, the Dems lost control of the House AND the Senate, and they only have regained control of the Senate for a brief moment of because of party switching in the past 10 years. Remember, even Clinton said it, and he said it more than once, guns caused the Congress to switch from Dem to Republican control in '92, the presidency in 2000, and resulted in a Republican sweep of local races in 2002. Look at how many anti-gunners that ran only on an anti-gun platform that lost the last election and many lost big time at that. I hope the Dems keep this BS up becaue the Dem leadership is out of touch with the people and they are starting believe in their own hype. They are setting the stage for a roll-back of the AW '94 and then some. The House already passed a repeal of the '94AWB way back, and those politicos have seen what the gun controvery will get them, and that is out in the street. The Reps and Senators who are advocating more gun control are people from the safe democatic states such as Calif. The world is a changed placed since 9/11/01 WTC/Pentagon attacks and the Beltway Sniper attacks. A lot of people in the previous election aren't buying that BS about banning guns will make this world a safer place etc. We've had an Fed AG that said the to the NRA, the "2nd Amend is an individual right." Of course we will see it when he puts his money where his mouth is. A lot Republicans got to where they're at because of the NRA, and the NRA is gonna pull out the stops on this one.
Link Posted: 5/10/2003 9:33:29 AM EDT
the chains of slavery are forged one link at a time
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