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Can mayors make Jared Loughner the poster boy for gun control?

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To remedy the situation, Bloomberg would like to see President Obama use his State of the Union address to “make a strong pledge to fix our gun laws and shore up our background check system.”

Realistically, the odds of Congress passing any new gun control legislation are “zero,” says Pete Davis of Davis Capital Investment Ideas, a Washington commentator and author of the blog Capital Gains and Games.

“Look at the president – right after the shooting did he breathe a word about guns?” says Mr. Davis. “It is a total non-starter in the House and it would be filibustered in the Senate.”

Instead, he anticipates Obama will stick to talking about the need for civility in the State of the Union message: “He has already ducked the issue, he knows how contentious it is.”

To get passed, Bloomberg’s proposals would have to survive a battle with the National Rifle Association, a powerful lobby that represents the gun industry and gun owners.

To the NRA, Bloomberg and the mayors should be working with law enforcement agencies to enforce existing laws.

“His intention is to get in front of a camera and push an agenda of gun control,” says Andrew Arulanandam, director of public affairs at the NRA in Washington. “What is noteworthy is that the NRA is the entity that conceived the national check system.”

Mr. Arulanandam says the mayor should not blame the shooting in Tucson on a lack of gun control. “There were many instances where he [Loughner] should have been flagged,” he says, “Bloomberg is scapegoating law-abiding gun owners for political purposes.”

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