WASHINGTON (AP) - Two of the loudest voices in the gun debate say it's up to voters now to make their position known to Congress.
New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and National Rifle Associate Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre claim their opposing views on guns have the support of the overwhelming number of Americans. They are looking at the next two weeks as critical to the debate, when lawmakers head home to hear from constituents ahead of next month's anticipated Senate vote on gun control.
Bloomberg, a former Republican-turned-independent, has just sunk $12 million for Mayors Against Illegal Guns to run television ads and phone banks in 13 states urging voters to tell their senators to pass legislation requiring universal background checks for gun buyers.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Thursday that legislation would likely be debated in his chamber next month that will include expanded federal background checks, tougher laws and stiffer sentences for gun trafficking and increased school safety grants.