UNDATED (CBS) - President Obama is pushing ahead with his proposals for new gun control legislation. But leaders in the Senate say they want a gun control bill that can pass Congress.
President Obama takes his pitch for gun safety to Minneapolis today. He wants Congress to require universal background checks, limit how many bullets gun clips can hold, and pass a ban on assault weapons. But in Washington, much of the focus is on more limited legislation. Sen. Harry Reid said on ABC "This Week", "I think everyone acknowledges that we should do something with background checks."
Not everyone. Wayne LaPierre, the head of the NRA, says the president's proposals won't stop gun crimes. He said on Fox News Sunday, "It's a fraud to call it universal, it's not universal, the criminals are never going to comply with it."
But Mark Kelly, husband of former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, believes current background checks are working and says they need to be extended to include sales at gun shows and private deals. He said on Fox News Sunday, "Since 1999, 1.7 million people were prevented from getting a firearm because they had a criminal record or a history of mental illness. We stopped those people from getting a gun, now we have to make sure they don't have a second option to get a gun."
The toughest sell on Capitol Hill is the assault weapons ban, something even Senate's top Democrat, Majority leader Harry Reid, has not yet endorsed. He said on ABC "This Week", "I didn't vote for the assault weapons last time because it didn't make sense but I'll take a look at it."
Kelly says Congress needs to pass the ban. He says, "I spent 25 years in the military, I know the value of an assault weapon, and it's to kill a lot of people very quickly and I think they are way too readily available."
LaPierre says semi-automatic guns help keep Americans safe. Two recent polls indicate more than three quarters of NRA members support universal background checks.