Friday, January 04, 2013
White House prepares to overwhelm NRA and pass legislation to deal with gun violence. Oh, this is great news! Update!
Courtesy of TPM:
The White House and gun control supporters are gearing up for a whirlwind month, with plans to pass reform legislation before outrage over the Sandy Hook massacre has a chance to fade.
While the fiscal cliff has dominated Washington’s attention in recent weeks, lawmakers and activists are laying the groundwork for their big push. Vice President Joe Biden, tasked with heading a commission to investigate gun violence, has been quietly meeting with experts, interest groups, and public officials and is expected to release a set of recommendations within weeks. Boston mayor Thomas Menino, co-chair of Michael Bloomberg’s Mayors Against Illegal Guns, told the Boston Herald this week that an optimistic Biden had assured him that Obama would sign legislation “by the end of January.”
“We had been led to believe their report would come by end of January, but we’re hearing they may want to have something out by January 15, even quicker than expected,” Mark Glaze, director of Mayors Against Illegal Guns, told TPM.
House Democrats are moving ahead with their own plans as well. On Friday, Rep. Mike Thompson (D-CA), chair of the newly created Gun Violence Prevention Task Force, announced the appointment of 12 vice chairs, including Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY), the body’s leading voice on gun control. According to a Democratic aide, the group plans to release its recommendations in early February and is already organizing public hearings on the issue.
Obama has personally identified an assault weapons ban and limits on ammunition magazine size as top priorities. Other possible reforms could include background check requirements for purchases at gun shows, a loophole that’s helped create a huge market of off-record arms purchases.
This is SUCH good news!
I had been worried that the attention span of the American people and Congress would prove to short for anything of importance to be done on this issue before we became distracted with other breaking news items or partisan political battles.
However I have also believed that this time things were different and that we would finally see some real impactful legislation passed to deal with what I think we can all agree is an out of control situation.
You know I believed the President when he said that hearing about the Newtown massacre was the worst day of his presidency. I saw that man's heart breaking when he addressed the nation after that attack, and believed that he could not simply allow things to remain the way they are without doing something to protect our children. I am glad to see that I was right to have faith.
New York Daily News:
Limping slightly and leaning on astronaut husband Mark Kelly for support, Giffords smiled as she entered town hall and embraced Schools Superintendent Janet Robinson.
“We’re so glad you came,” Robinson said. “Thank you.”
“How horrible,” Giffords replied, holding on to Robinson for a beat longer.
Then Giffords was ushered inside for a private meeting with Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D—Conn.) and Lt. Gov. Nancy Wyman.
Giffords brought with her a perspective that only a select few share — that of a person who came face-to-face with the kind of madness that left 20 innocent children and six school staffers dead on a cruel December morning.
You know I thought I was filled with hope after reading of the President's plans, but seeing Gabby in Newtown, and realizing that she will most likely lend her voice to this issue as well, increases that hope tenfold.