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PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 7:31 am
 


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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Senate on Wednesday rejected a bipartisan plan to expand background checks for gun buyers, dealing a crippling blow to President Barack Obama's campaign to curb gun violence after the Newtown school massacre.

Despite emotional pleas from families of victims of the Newtown, Connecticut, shootings and broad public support nationwide, the plan to extend background checks to online and gun-show sales failed on a 54-46 vote, six short of the 60-vote hurdle needed to clear the Senate.

"All in all, this was a pretty shameful day for Washington," an angry Obama said of the vote, adding the effort "is not over."

The amendment by Democrat Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Republican Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania had represented Obama's best hope to pass meaningful gun-control legislation after the December massacre of 20 children and six adults at an elementary school in Newtown.

"Our hearts are broken. Our spirit is not," Mark Barden, the father of a victim of the Newtown shootings, said at the White House after the vote, with Obama looking on. "We always knew this would be a long road. We don't have the luxury of turning back."

Other measures backed by Obama - including a proposal to ban rapid-firing "assault" weapons like the one used in Connecticut - also failed in a series of Senate votes that starkly showed the lingering political power of gun rights defenders and the National Rifle Association.

"It came down to politics," Obama said, adding too many senators had worried a vocal minority of gun owners would come after them in the next election.

The votes were the culmination of weeks of intense negotiations and lobbying over Obama's proposed gun restrictions. The defeat of the background checks amendment could doom the biggest package of gun legislation Congress has considered in two decades.

"Shame on you!" a spectator in the gallery shouted as the tally was announced by Vice President Joe Biden, who presided over the Senate votes.

Political momentum for new gun-control laws had dissipated after December's shooting. Opponents criticized the proposals as government overreach that would infringe on the constitutional right to bear arms, and the NRA mounted a strong lobbying effort against it.

"Show some guts," Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein told her colleagues before they voted on her amendment to ban assault weapons, which drew support from only 40 senators.

Four Democrats who will face re-election in conservative, gun-friendly states opposed the Manchin-Toomey background checks amendment - Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota, Mark Begich of Alaska, Mark Pryor of Arkansas and Max Baucus of Montana.

Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid supported the measure, but changed his vote after it was apparent it would lose in order to preserve his option to bring the measure back up in the Senate.

Four Republicans backed it: Toomey, Susan Collins of Maine, John McCain of Arizona and Mark Kirk of Illinois.

POLITICAL PAYBACK

Supporters promised political payback for foes of the amendment. Former U.S. Representative Gabrielle Giffords, severely wounded in a 2011 mass shooting in Arizona, said in a joint statement with husband Mark Kelly that the Senate "ignored the will of the American people."

"We will use every means possible to make sure the constituents of these senators know that their elected representatives ignored them, and put Washington, D.C. special interest politics over the effort to keep their own communities safer from the tragedy of gun violence," they said.

The Manchin-Toomey background checks amendment allowed exemptions for private sales or gifts between families and friends and prohibited the creation of a national registry of guns. Polls show more than 80 percent of Americans support expanded background checks.

'SHAMEFUL SCARE TACTICS'

But the NRA had warned members the proposal would require checks for sales and gifts between family and friends and lead to a national registry.

The NRA's assertions are "a lie. That is simply a lie, and anybody who can read knows that is not factual," Manchin, a strong gun-rights defender, said on the Senate floor on Wednesday.

Reid, a Nevada gun owner and gun-rights defender, accused the gun lobby of "shameful scare tactics" and questioned why his colleagues would reject a proposal backed by nearly 90 percent of Americans.

"We must strike a better balance between the right to defend ourselves and the right of every child in America to grow up safe from gun violence," Reid said.

The Democratic-led Senate also rejected several Republican-sponsored amendments backed by the NRA that would have expanded gun rights.

An amendment from Republican Senator Charles Grassley of Iowa would have replaced the existing gun-control bill with a plan to focus on prosecuting gun crimes, improving mental health records for gun owners and funding improved school safety measures. It was rejected on a 52-48 vote.

"Rather than restricting the rights of law-abiding Americans, we should be focusing on keeping guns out of the hands of violent criminals, which this legislation accomplishes," Texas Republican Senator Ted Cruz said of Grassley's measure.


http://ca.news.yahoo.com/u-senate-defea ... 05403.html


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 7:42 am
 


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failed on a 54-46 vote, six short of the 60-vote hurdle needed to clear the Senate.

And I thought Republicans claimed to be strict constitutionalists? 51 votes is all that's needed according to the constitution. If Obama were smart, he'd call the bluff or let the nutjobs filibuster 'til they drop, then declare the vote passed.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 8:05 am
 


It's more a blow to the will of the American people. 90% approve of expanded background checks from all cross sections demographic groups. From hippies to NRA members.

Salus populi suprema est lex
is a concept that isn't allowed in US (or too many other places for that matter)


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 8:10 am
 


Furthermore, I don't think I've ever seen Obama (or any other president) pissed like that yesterday.

Again, what does it take to affect change? 20 dead kids isn't enough? What's going to be theatric number? 50? 100? A preschool? A Lamaze class?


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 9:39 am
 


xerxes wrote:
Again, what does it take to affect change? 20 dead kids isn't enough? What's going to be theatric number? 50? 100? A preschool? A Lamaze class?


Try taking a bomb in your underwear onto a plane, and see how quickly they pass legislation that everyone gets strip searched.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 9:45 am
 


xerxes wrote:
Furthermore, I don't think I've ever seen Obama (or any other president) pissed like that yesterday.

Again, what does it take to affect change? 20 dead kids isn't enough? What's going to be theatric number? 50? 100? A preschool? A Lamaze class?



The US is built of sterner stuff than changing because of a few dead people. 11,000 people died from gun homicides in 2011. What's another daycare center or two?


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 10:27 am
 


xerxes wrote:
Furthermore, I don't think I've ever seen Obama (or any other president) pissed like that yesterday.

Again, what does it take to affect change? 20 dead kids isn't enough? What's going to be theatric number? 50? 100? A preschool? A Lamaze class?

You'd probably have to wipe an entire city off the map before they decided it was time to make a change.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 10:31 am
 


jeff744 wrote:
xerxes wrote:
Furthermore, I don't think I've ever seen Obama (or any other president) pissed like that yesterday.

Again, what does it take to affect change? 20 dead kids isn't enough? What's going to be theatric number? 50? 100? A preschool? A Lamaze class?

You'd probably have to wipe an entire city off the map before they decided it was time to make a change.

Or just a handful of rich, white republicans


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 10:31 am
 


xerxes wrote:
It's more a blow to the will of the American people. 90% approve of expanded background checks from all cross sections demographic groups. From hippies to NRA members.

Does anyone have the source of this 90% number? I don't doubt that the number is well over 50%, but I've heard everything from 75% to 90%.

As for the bill, it was hardly perfect. It required background checks for more sales, but it wouldn't keep records of who bought what. This omission would make the law very, very difficult to enforce.

I'd like to think they can do better, but that would be overly optimistic.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 10:39 am
 


My understanding is that it exempted selling your gun to relatives, friends and neighbors.

Quote:
It’s a beautiful day in this neighborhood,
A beautiful day for a neighbor,
Would you be mine? Could you be mine?

It’s a neighborly day in this beautywood,
A neighborly day for a beauty,
Would you be mine? Could you be mine?

I have always wanted to have a neighbor just like you,
I’ve always wanted to live in a neighborhood with you.

So let’s make the most of this beautiful day,
Since we’re together, we might as well say,
Would you be mine? Could you be mine?
Won’t you be my neighbor?

Won’t you please, won’t you please,
Please won’t you be my neighbor?




Americans Image


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 10:42 am
 


andyt wrote:
My understanding is that it exempted selling your gun to relatives, friends and neighbors

You can be my friend if you give me $2000 in non-consecutive bills. I'll also accept a kilo of coke.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 10:44 am
 


Is that all that a kilo of coke is worth? Anyway, in BC we go to the states to trade bud for guns and coke.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 10:44 am
 


andyt wrote:
Quote:
It’s a beautiful day in this neighborhood,
A beautiful day for a neighbor,
Would you be mine? Could you be mine?...

In relation to the USA and their stance on crime, Eddie Murphy's parody on SNL hit closer to the mark:

Quote:
It's... one... hell of a day in the neighborhood
A hell of a day for a neighbor
Would you be mine?
Could you be mine?
I've always wanted to live in a house like yours, my friend
Maybe when there's nobody home... I'll break in!
So... come out with some folks and a smoke
You bring the stash, 'cause Robinson's broke!
Will you be mine?
Won't you be mine?
Won't you be my neighbor?"


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 10:49 am
 


Lemmy wrote:
In relation to the USA and their stance on crime, Eddie Murphy's parody on SNL hit closer to the mark:

Quote:
I've always wanted to live in a house like yours, my friend
Maybe when there's nobody home... I'll break in!


See, it's stuff like this that proves those Americans need them guns.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 11:10 am
 


It's WAY too late to try and enact even reasonable gun control measures in the US anymore. There's not even any closing of the barn door after the horse has bolted because the barn has burned down.


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