If background checks enjoy the most consensus, what to do about restricting access to assault weapons is perhaps the most controversial.
The Brady Campaign, one of the most outspoken advocates for increased gun control, gives only a single broad sentence to the subject in its policy recommendations: “Limit the availability of military-style weapons and high capacity ammunition magazines that are designed for mass killing.”
But others have been a bit more specific at reviving a policy created under President Bill Clinton but allowed to lapse under President George W. Bush.
CAP endorsed a proposal by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D) of California that would halt the “sale, transfer, importation and manufacturing of military-style assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition feeding devices.” In other words, it would freeze ownership of weapons like that used in the Newtown, Conn., massacre at its current level. Feinstein and other Democratic Senators plan to introduce legislation to this effect early in the new session of Congress.
Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D) of Connecticut told reporters on Monday that she was introducing legislation to offer a $1,000, refundable tax credit for each of the next two years to encourage owners of assault weapons to turn them in to local authorities.
But reducing access to guns of any kind raises the hackles of conservative groups like the National Rifle Association, whose head vowed over the weekend that liberals simply don’t have the votes for such an assault weapons restriction.
Sen. Ted Cruz (R) of Texas, a freshman, told PBS’ Judy Woodruff that he would fight any such legislation.