1994: In his unsuccessful challenge to liberal Democratic Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, Romney sounds moderate on guns, supporting an assault weapons ban and insisting: "I don't line up with the NRA."
2002: Running for governor of Massachusetts, Romney says he supports and will protect the state's "tough gun laws." The NRA gives his Democratic opponent a higher rating on gun-rights issues and makes no endorsement in the race.
2003: As governor, Romney upsets gun owners by signing a law that quadruples the state's gun-licensing fee — from $25 to $100 — as part of a widespread effort to eliminate the budget deficit.
2004: Romney signs a Massachusetts ban on assault weapons. He mollifies many gun-rights advocates by coupling it with looser rules on gun licenses and an extension of the duration of licenses, reducing the effect of the earlier fee increase.
2005: Declares May 7 as "Right to Bear Arms Day" in Massachusetts.
2006: As he prepares for his first presidential run, Romney becomes a lifetime NRA member.
2007: While campaigning, Romney declares he sometimes hunts "small varmints" — a comment ridiculed by some as an awkward attempt to pander to pro-gun voters.
2008: In a Republican primary debate, Romney says he would have signed the federal assault weapons ban if it came to his desk as president, but he opposes any new gun legislation.
2011: Making his second presidential bid, Romney's campaigns on a promise to protect and promote the Second Amendment.
2012: Romney tells gun owners that Obama wants to erode their rights. "We need a president who will enforce current laws, not create new ones that only serve to burden lawful gun owners," Romney told the National Rifle Association's annual convention. "President Obama has not. I will."
July 20: Like Obama, Romney avoids talking politics on the day of the Aurora shooting. He says Americans are coming together in their sorrow: "There is something we can do. We can offer comfort to someone near us who is suffering or heavy laden, and we can mourn with those who mourn in Colorado."
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