Anderson Cooper asks National Rifle Association President David Keene why he doesn't support expanded background checks. Keene also responds to a 360 hidden camera investigation that shows how easy it is to buy guns at gun shows without showing ID.
Persuading Congress to ban assault weapons will be tough, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg said Thursday.
But it's a fight the outspoken advocate of stricter gun laws says he's determined to win.
"Getting rid of assault weapons, that is a tougher sell, and that's what we've really got to work on," Bloomberg said in an interview with CNN's AC360°. "I'm optimistic, but it's tougher."
Bloomberg said he's encouraging the roughly 800 mayors who are members of his Mayors Against Illegal Guns organization to start lobbying lawmakers and "explain to them why constituents really want this done."
Speaking a day after President Barack Obama announced a list of proposals to reduce gun violence, Bloomberg said the package - which calls on Congress to reinstate the assault weapons ban, restrict ammunition magazines and expand background checks for gun buyers - is "reasonably comprehensive."
New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg is at the forefront of the campaign for stricter gun legislation in America. Stirred by the shooting massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School, he’s been increasingly vocal in demanding new federal gun control measures.
Tonight Anderson Cooper sits down with Bloomberg to get his reaction to the 23 executive actions signed by President Obama on Wednesday, and the gun legislation he sent to Capitol Hill.
Bloomberg has called for many of the White House proposals, including prohibiting the sale of the military-style assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition clips, and addressing background checks.
Colin Goddard, who was shot during the 2007 Virginia Tech mass shooting, and Alexis Haller, uncle of Sandy Hook school shooting victim Noah Pozner, share their reactions to Pres. Obama's plan to reduce gun violence in America.
On Wednesday President Obama signed 23 gun control executive actions and urged Congress to pass additional changes and fund research related to gun violence.
His proposals include universal background checks for every gun sale and bans on military style assault weapons and high-capacity magazines.
The president also asked legislators to confirm B. Todd Jones as head of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. Congress hasn't confirmed a director for the agency in six years.
A day earlier the NRA released a controversial ad focusing on President Obama's daughters. Anderson Cooper reports on the president's plan to reduce gun violence, and reaction to the ad.
In the National Rife Association’s first statement after the school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, the group’s executive vice president told America that the solution for a more secure country is more weapons. Wayne LaPierre announced, “The only way to stop a monster from killing our kids is to be personally involved and invested in a plan of absolute protection. The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.”
The idea of solving the problem by placing armed guards in every school sparked more heated debates about gun regulation. Those in favor of stricter gun laws rejected the proposal. Positive reaction came from pro-gun groups, and those supporters are pointing to an incident in San Antonio, Texas as evidence that arming the good guys works.
Jim Acosta and Dr. Sanjay Gupta report on the political and medical implications of a measure in the health care law that restricts doctors from collecting data on patients' gun use.
Charles Blow and Margaret Hoover discuss the power of the National Rifle Association in Washington, and gun regulation.
"The NRA, for being a powerful lobby, is a lobby that represents 4.2 million gun owners. It represents actually a grass roots movement," says Hoover. "Americans like their second amendment, they like their guns, so they're representing the will of the people."
Blow argues the interests of the gun makers are the driving force behind the NRA, and says "they are basically a front" for gun manufacturers. "If you were just worried about who wanted to own guns...there are a lot of things you could do short of saying or advocating for not being able to trace weapons."
Anderson Cooper goes beyond the headlines to tell stories from many points of view, so you can make up your own mind about the news. Tune in weeknights at 8 and 10 ET on CNN.
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