Top Democrat Sees 50-50 Chance of Assault Weapons Ban

Sandy Levin predicted with greater confidence new regulations on gun shows, magazine size, and purchasing of weapons.

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Sandy Levin speaking at a Christian Science Monitor breakfast.

A top House Democrat said Tuesday that there's a 50-50 chance that Congress will act to ban assault rifles again. He predicted with greater confidence new regulations on gun shows, magazine size, and purchasing of weapons.

"We will pass some major provisions, I think, in terms of magazines … I think we can do that," Rep. Sandy Levin of Michigan, who favors gun control, told reporters at a press breakfast sponsored by the Christian Science Monitor. He also predicted action on "more clear surveillance in terms of who can buy" and he said that he believes that "gun shows will come under regulation."

[See a collection of political cartoons on gun control and gun rights.]

Vice President Joe Biden met with President Obama Monday to discuss gun control recommendations including, reportedly, 19 items which the president can act on using his executive authority.

Levin, the top Democrat on the House Ways & Means Committee, said that after the Sandy Hook massacre, "the ground shifted on gun control, including the ground on which the president stands." He added: "I think everybody should be honest. I think a lot of people have shied away from gun control because they thought it was politically difficult."

  • Read the U.S. News debate: Should High-Capacity Ammunition Magazines Be Banned?
  • Jamie Stiehm: Obama Has the High Ground—Will He Use It?
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