Obama inches closer to gun control

Last updated 10:22 19/12/2012
SAD DAY: US President Barack Obama breaks down during a press conference about the latest US school shooting.

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The White House has outlined some gun control measures that US President Barack Obama would support in the aftermath of the Connecticut school massacre, including moves by a Democratic senator to reinstate an assault weapons ban.

At a memorial service this week, Obama promised to address gun violence after a shooting rampage at a Connecticut school that killed 26 people, including 20 children.

White House spokesman Jay Carney said Obama would support US Senator Dianne Feinstein's effort to craft legislation to reinstate an assault weapons ban and would also back any law to close a loophole related to gun-show sales, he said.

"People have talked about high-capacity gun ammunition clips, for example, and that is something certainly that he would be interested in looking at," Carney added.

Obama spoke earlier in the day with Democratic Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia, a gun rights advocate who said he would now be open to more regulation of military-style rifles like the one used in Newtown, Connecticut.

"He is heartened, I should mention, by what we have all heard from some members of Congress who have been longtime opponents of gun control measures, common sense gun control measures like the assault weapons ban and the like," Carney said.

Obama has met with senior administration officials including Vice President Joe Biden, Education Secretary Arne Duncan, Attorney General Eric Holder, and Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius about the issue.

"It's the beginning of a process where ... we will look for ways to address this problem in the wake of the tragedy in Newtown," Carney said.

"It's clear that as a nation we haven't done enough to address the scourge of gun violence," he said, reiterating that Obama wanted to move on the issue in the coming weeks.

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- Reuters

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