Gun control advocates are pressuring legislators who voted against expanding background checks. CNN's Dana Bash reports.
Gabby Giffords remembers facing her assailant at his sentencing.
"Beady eyes," she said of Jared Loughner, who shot the former Arizona congresswoman in the head with a 9mm Glock pistol. Six people died and 13 were injured that day when the deranged gunman opened fire in front of a Tucson supermarket.
At the sentencing last November, Giffords sat stoically - staring Loughner down - as her husband, Mark Kelly, spoke to the court.
"Well, yes, he had some interesting expressions on his face," said Kelly. "And she did not look away."
"Beady eyes," Giffords repeated.
In an exclusive, wide-ranging interview with CNN, Giffords and Kelly understand they are now in the center of the heated debate over gun control and background checks, while still struggling to rebuild their lives after that day in January 2011, when their lives changed forever.
Programming note: Watch the second part of Dana Bash's interview with Gabby Giffords and Mark Kelly on AC360° at 8 and 10 p.m. ET Wednesday.
Gabby Giffords, a powerful advocate for stricter gun legislation, is optimistic about universal background checks. She and her husband, Mark Kelly, spoke exclusively with CNN's Dana Bash about her recovery and efforts to change gun laws.
Editor's note: See more of Dana Bash's interview with Gabby Giffords and Mark Kelly on AC360° at 8 and 10 p.m. ET tonight.
What is most shocking about Gabby Giffords now is how much she looks like her old self. Her golden locks are back, so is the sparkle in her eyes and her broad smile. Gone is the short hair and thin frame we saw at the beginning of her recovery.
Yet she knows she will never be the same.
"Stronger. Stronger, better, tougher. Stronger, better, tougher." That's how Giffords describes herself.
The former Arizona congresswoman makes that declaration with determination and gusto. But it still takes a considerable amount of energy and concentration to articulate that, or anything else.
Programming note: See more of Dana Bash's interview with Gabby Giffords and Mark Kelly on AC360° at 8 and 10 p.m. ET Tuesday night.
Former Congresswoman Gabby Giffords and her husband, Mark Kelly, tell CNN's Dana Bash that they continue to own guns for recreation. Giffords was severely wounded during a 2011 shooting rampage that injured 12 others and killed six in Tucson.
For target practice, Kelly uses the same type of gun Giffords was shot with, a 9mm Glock, but with a magazine that can hold 17 rounds. The Tucson shooter had a magazine that held 33 rounds.
They believe they have credibility in the gun control debate because they are long-time gun owners who support Second Amendment rights. The couple is campaigning for stricter gun laws, including universal background checks, to prevent guns from getting in to the wrong hands.
Rep. Michele Bachmann says Obamacare can "literally kill" people. Keeping Them Honest, CNN's Dana Bash asks her for evidence to back up the statement.
Sen. Rand Paul ended his quest Thursday to block a vote on the nomination of John Brennan to be CIA director after he received an answer from the Obama administration about his question on drones.
Paul's decision to back down cleared the way for a final Senate vote this afternoon, and the chamber confirmed Brennan in a 63-34 vote that crossed party lines.
In a letter to Paul Thursday afternoon, Attorney General Eric Holder said that the president does not have the authority to use a drone to kill an American not engaged in combat on U.S. soil.
Sen. Robert Menendez slammed accusations that he had paid a Dominican woman for sex and expressed hope Tuesday that those behind the claims would be exposed in the wake of the woman's notarized confession that she'd never even met the New Jersey Democrat.
"I hope that you will all vigorously go after who was the source and purpose as you did go after the story at the time," he told reporters.
In a notarized statement filed in court, Nexis de los Santos Santana said she was filmed without her knowledge when she claimed that Menendez had paid her to have sex.
CNN's Dana Bash talks to legislators leaving Washington for a long weekend a day before the $85 billion in spending cuts takes effect.