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NRA likens universal checks to gun registry

By The Associated Press

This article was originally published February 3, 2013 at 10:21 a.m. Updated February 3, 2013 at 11:21 a.m.

— The National Rifle Association’s executive vice president continued to oppose background checks for all gun purchases despite polls indicating that most NRA members don’t share his position.

The NRA’s Wayne LaPierre said on “Fox News Sunday” that background checks for all gun purchases would lead to a national registry of gun owners. Critics say such a registry could lead to taxes on guns or to confiscation.

Mark Kelly, a gun owner and husband of Gabrielle Giffords, the former Arizona congresswoman who survived a 2011 shooting, asked LaPierre to listen to his members. He said the current system prevented 1.7 million gun purchases since 1999. However, those potential buyers had other options because many gun sales don’t require a background check.

“Members of the NRA tend to be very reasonable on this issue,” Kelly said, who also appeared on the Fox show.

As Congress responds to the spate of mass shootings in recent years, most notably the December massacre of 20 children and six teachers in Newtown, Conn., some are calling for a ban on certain semi-automatic weapons and on high-capacity ammunition magazines. However, calls for expanding background checks appear to have gained the most bipartisan support.

LaPierre said that requiring checks for all gun purchases would be a bureaucratic nightmare.

“It’s going to affect only the law-abiding people,” he said. “Criminals could care less.

LaPierre was pressed about his contention that gun checks would lead to a national registry, when no one from the Obama administration is calling for that.

“And Obamacare wasn’t a tax until they needed it to be a tax,” LaPierre said.

Kelly and LaPierre agreed on one point: More people seeking to buy guns illegally should be prosecuted.

“They should be prosecuted and there should be stiff penalties,” Kelly said.

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Jackabbott says... February 3, 2013 at 11:43 a.m.

Actually the owners of military style weapons and handguns need to be registered like sex offenders. So neighbors, acquaintances, employers, educators, parents, churchgoers can know how to deal with these people or choose to avoid them.
Concealed guns owners who are permintted should have their names and addresses published on a national wide web sites to keep the public informed.
You own a gun, a vehicle, you are responsible for its usage.

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Jfish says... February 3, 2013 at 11:59 a.m.

I am a conservative gun owner and I believe that the NRA is fighting a losing battle on this issue. This is the whole problem with the gun debate, each side wants to stake out extreme positions. Hopefully level heads and the middle will prevail.

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Duanebutchjordan says... February 3, 2013 at 12:06 p.m.

If they would enforce the gun laws it would take 90% of the criminals with guns off the street. It would be a much safer country to live in.

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DontDrinkDatKoolAid says... February 3, 2013 at 2:06 p.m.

One LaPierre is correct on ALL issues.
One needs to read "Forget hunting" great column.

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2Knights says... February 3, 2013 at 3:31 p.m.

Sandy Hook has been called the Dunblane of America. The Dunblane(Scotland) mass murder was committed with a .22 caliber revolver. See where this is going? Confiscate all firearms immediately instead of piecemeal. When the crime rate soars, as it will, institute martial law. If the U.S. can't or won't do a door-to-door sweep, then there are a lot of African, Muslim, Asian & European nations who'd gladly come over & help, & even stay afterwards as a peacekeeping force. Instant gun control + socialism, whoopee!

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RonalFos says... February 3, 2013 at 4:40 p.m.

I predict that in the end there will be no laws banning so assault type rifles but there will be a limit on clip size and full background checks with no loopholes. The reason this is going to happen is the majority of Americans want this to happen. There will be some win and lose on both sides of this issue. That is how a democracy is supposed to work.

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DontDrinkDatKoolAid says... February 3, 2013 at 5:25 p.m.

What part of "Shall not be infringed upon" is not understood?

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DontDrinkDatKoolAid says... February 3, 2013 at 6:23 p.m.

"What part of "a well regulated militia being necessary" is not understood?"
That "militia" is We the People.

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FreeSpiritMan says... February 3, 2013 at 7:09 p.m.

They were far them before they were against them, polls show something difference.
New York Times/CBS News poll this month that found an 85 percent majority of people in households with an NRA member supporting universal background checks.

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RonalFos says... February 3, 2013 at 7:54 p.m.

When the Constitution was written the militia was controlled by state governors and they met and drilled as a group as needed for the defense of first the colonies then later the states. The US military was not big enough to provide protection for states particularly on the frontier where they were needed for protection from very real threats. If you want to be a Constitutional purest, then being armed requires you to be a part of a state controlled militia which today is the National Guard. If you want an assault weapon with a 30 round clip, by all means join the National Guard. They will buy one for you, train you on it and buy all the ammunition you need.

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