Obama Asks Police to Help Pass Gun Legislation

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  • WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama kept up pressure on Congress Monday to pass tough new gun legislation, seeking help from law enforcement leaders in three communities that have suffered the horrors of mass shootings.

    At a White House meeting, Obama said that no group is more important in the gun debate and he said he recognizes the issue “elicits a lot of passion all across the country.” But Obama also said he believes Congress will respond to appeals from police.

    “Hopefully if law enforcement officials who are dealing with this stuff every single day can come to some basic consensus in terms of steps that we need to take,” he said, “Congress is going to be paying attention to them, and we’ll be able to make progress.”

    The president’s meeting comes as he tries to build support for gun control legislation that will be difficult to get through Congress. He urged Congress to pass an assault weapons ban, limit high capacity magazines and require universal background checks.

    Obama campaign manager Jim Messina has indicated he will be using the power of the president’s still intact political organization to mobilize support for the legislation. Messina traveled to New York City last week to meet with aides to Mayor Michael Bloomberg at City Hall, according to a person familiar with the discussion, speaking on a condition of anonymity since the meeting was private. Bloomberg has tightened gun laws in the city and founded Mayors Against Illegal Guns, a coalition that now has more than 800 mayors pushing for national legislation.

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