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Tucson shooting spotlights US shift on gun control

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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.

"You have to pick your fights, and I think [Obama] just decided [gun control] was a losing battle," Rep. James Moran (D) of Virginia told The Hill newspaper recently.

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.

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