Members of Congress seeking to increase gun control are similarly aiming at niche issues. Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D) of New York wants to ban extended magazines – like the ones used in the Tucson shooting. Sen. Charles Schumer (D) of New York wants the federal background-check database to include people rejected by the military for drug use – a measure that would have prevented Tucson suspect Jared Lee Loughner from buying a gun legally.
But larger gun-control priorities have mostly been abandoned. President Obama came into office promising to restore the assault-weapons ban. He has instead signed two gun-rights laws, allowing licensed guns on Amtrak trains and in national parks.
The Arizona shootings provided no boost for gun-control advocates. Only 1 in 5 Americans believes stricter gun laws could have prevented the shooting, Gallup reported.
At the state level, gun laws are expanding. For instance:
•Bills have been filed in the Texas Legislature to allow college students and professors to carry guns on campus.
•Florida state Rep. Jose Diaz (R) proposed a bill that would waive roadblocks for Floridians buying guns in Georgia and Alabama. Also in Florida, Republican lawmakers filed a bill that would prohibit doctors and their staff from asking patients if they own guns.