Biden Closing in on Specific Gun Control Measures

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WASHINGTON - Vice President Joe Biden will hand President Obama a number of suggestions to curb gun violence early next week.

Before then, the vice president will continue to meet at the White House with dozens of groups having anything to do with the issue.

On Thursday, that included the most powerful opponent of more gun restrictions, the National Rifle Association.

Biden said he's reached no conclusions but has a tight deadline with President Obama.

"I committed to him I'd have these recommendations to him by Tuesday," he told reporters before his latest meeting.

But Biden and his advisers appear to be closing in on some specifics.

"Universal background checks - not just close the gun show loophole, but total, universal background checks, even including private sales," he mentioned as one possible example.

The vice president admitted that it wouldn't keep guns from criminals unless every state does its part logging in criminal files.

"(It) doesn't do a whole lot of good if in some states they have a backlog of 40-, 50-, 60,000 felons that they never registered," he said.

Biden said he's never seen so many lawmakers ready to restrict high-capacity magazines. Nor has he seen before so many religious leaders prepared for more gun control.

"Because this does have a significant moral dimension to it," he said. "How we make American communities safer." 

At the same time as Biden's meeting in the nation's capitol, law enforcement and politicians were gathered in Minneapolis at the Summit to Combat Gun Violence.

Milwaukee Police Chief Ed Flynn focused the spotlight on the brutal massacre of 20 children and seven adults in Newtown, Conn., last December.

"I've wondered for some time if anything bad enough could happen in the United States that might cause people to re-examine some of our gun laws," Flynn said. "And just possibly 20 dead babies is it."

Meanwhile, back in Washington Biden heard some tough talk from top gun advocacy groups like the NRA.

He admitted there will likely be push back from such advocates to some measures the White House may propose to Congress or try to implement on its own.

"Even if what we do only saves one life, it makes sense," he said. "And I think we can do a great deal without in any way imposing on or impinging on the rights of the Second Amendment, that the Second Amendment guarantees."

What the White House may not be prepared for is just how protective Americans are of those rights.  

For instance, the Obama administration may crack down hard on assault rifles. Several people have long-stated there's really no good reason for citizens to have such guns.

But many of those citizens continue to insist they want such weapons to defend their home or to hunt or to collect.

Some even warn citizens may need such guns if America's government ever turns on its own people, or there's an apocalyptic breakdown in civilization.  

So almost any gun restrictions the White House proposes or implements will surely face stiff resistance.

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Paul  Strand

Paul Strand

CBN News Washington Sr. Correspondent

As senior correspondent in CBN's Washington, D.C., bureau, Paul Strand has covered a variety of political and social issues, with an emphasis on defense, justice, and Congress.  Follow Paul on Twitter @PaulStrandCBN and "like" him at Facebook.com/PaulStrandCBN.