Texas Senator Ted Cruz and a parade of other possible 2016 Republican presidential candidates anchored the opening day of the National Rifle Association’s annual conference as they praised the lobby group for its efforts to defeat President Barack Obama’s gun legislation.
Washington is still capable of surprise. After two conservative, gun-owning senators from states with a strong gun culture couldn’t move modest gun-safety legislation through the Senate, something unusual happened: Their proposal didn’t die.
Senator Angus King, a Maine independent who caucuses with Democrats, said in an interview on Bloomberg Television’s “Political Capital with Al Hunt,” airing this weekend, that the U.S. must be “really careful” in determining its response to evidence from intelligence agencies that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime may have used chemical weapons.
Senator Dick Durbin of Illinois, the chamber’s No. 2 Democrat, said in an interview on Bloomberg Television’s “Political Capital with Al Hunt,” airing this weekend, that a bipartisan immigration bill introduced this week would enhance national security. His comments came as supporters of the measure tried to pre-empt concerns about terrorism as police hunted for an immigrant from Kyrgyzstan suspected in the Boston Marathon bombing after a second suspect -- his brother, also an immigrant -- was killed in a gun battle.
Supporters of gun-owners’ rights spent almost $1.5 million during the first three months of this year -- a 61 percent increase over the same time last year -- to defeat Senate proposals restricting firearm purchases after the slaughter of 20 elementary school students in Connecticut.
The Senate defeated a plan to expand background checks for firearm purchasers, imperiling President Barack Obama’s bid for new gun-control measures four months after 20 schoolchildren were shot to death in Newtown, Connecticut.