A ban on some semi-automatics considered to be assault weapons was tried from 1994 to 2004 and failed to reduce crime, he said. He also said background checks will never be universal because criminals won’t submit to them. Both are among measures that Obama is seeking.
Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., has already introduced legislation taking similar steps to Obama’s proposals, including banning assault weapons and magazines that house more than 10 rounds of ammunition.
She said Tuesday that she will hold her own hearing on gun control because she was unhappy that three of the five witnesses testifying to the Judiciary panel on Wednesday are “skewed against us.” Feinstein is a member of the committee.
Despite the momentum gun-control advocates have gained since the Newtown shootings, it will be difficult for them to prevail in Congress this year because of the popularity of guns in many states — including several represented by Democratic senators — and the formidable muscle of the NRA on Capitol Hill, lawmakers and other say. Among other obstacles, the Republican-run House has shown little immediate interest in making dramatic changes in the laws.
“It’s hard,” Feinstein said of gun legislation prospects. “I know it’s hard. It doesn’t mean I shouldn’t try.”