President Barack Obama is vowing to seek a consensus on reducing gun violence in the wake of a mass shooting in Colorado last week, while his Republican challenger Mitt Romney says the U.S. doesn’t need new limits on firearms.
Obama, addressing a conference of the National Urban League in New Orleans last nigh, said the nation must look beyond a single tragedy and find a solution to the everyday violence that “plagues so many cities.” He repeated his support for reinstating the federal assault weapons ban to keep them out of the hands of criminals.
These steps shouldn’t be controversial,” Obama said. “They should be common sense.”
Less than a week ago, a shooting at a movie theater in Aurora,Colorado, left 12 people dead and 58 injured. James Holmes, a 24-year-old graduate student being held in the incident, allegedly carried out the attack with a semi-automatic rifle, a shotgun and a handgun, which authorities said were purchased legally.
Earlier yesterday, Romney said he didn’t believe the U.S. needed new gun laws.
“We can sometimes hope that just changing a law will make all bad things go away. It won’t,” Romney said in an interview with NBC News in London, where he is beginning a trip that also will take him to Israel and Poland. “Changing the heart of the American people may well be what’s essential to improve the lots of the American people.”
For a candidate traveling abroad, Romney is getting plenty of exposure at home. In addition to his interview with NBC’s Brian Williams, the Romney campaign today says the candidate, in London, will tape an interview with CNN’s Piers Morgan to air tonight.
For more on the gun talk, see the Bloomberg story.