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Shooting renews debate over US gun control laws

Reporter: Jim Spellman 丨 CCTV.com

06-16-2016 10:38 BJT

Full coverage: 50 Dead in Orlando Nightclub Shooting

The debate about gun laws in the United States has been reignited in the wake of the mass shooting at a gay club in Orlando, Florida. Democrats have blasted Congress over their inability to address gun safety and demand that legislation be passed that would bar people on terror watchlists from buying firearms.

On floor of the U.S. Senate, a filibuster

A procedural way of temporarily stopping debate as Democrats focus on gun control measures after last weekend's Orlando shooting.

Presumptive Democratic Presidential Nominee Hillary Clinton is pushing to reinstate a ban on so-called assault weapons: high power military style rifles like the ones used by the shooters in Orlando, Sandy Hook and Aurora.

She said, "We do need to stop terrorists from getting their hands on the tools to carry out attacks so easily, especially assault weapons, military style assault weapons that have no place on our streets."

According to new polling from CBS News conducted after the Orlando massacre, 57% of Americans support an assault weapons ban - up from 44% in December.

But such a ban is opposed by most Republicans including Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican Nominee, who suggests more guns might be a solution - that armed patrons of the Pulse nightclub could have fought back.

He said, "If the bullets were going in the other direction aimed at this guy who was just going open target practice, you would have had a situation that was horrible, but nothing like the carnage that we all as a people suffered this weekend."

But Trump and some other Republicans have signaled a willingness to restrict people on terror watch lists from buying guns.

Even the powerful NRA gun lobby is now open to such a measure. In a written statement, the NRA said:

"Anyone on a terror watchlist who tries to buy a gun should be thoroughly investigated by the FBI and the sale delayed while the investigation is ongoing."

The U.S. Senate failed to pass a similar measure last December.

Trump and the NRA will meet to discuss gun related issues. The NRA has endorsed Trump for President.

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