Dayton mayor supports Obama gun control plan

Published: Thursday, January 17, 2013 @ 5:18 PM
Updated: Thursday, January 17, 2013 @ 5:18 PM

Dayton Mayor Gary Leitzell, in Washington on Thursday for the National Conference of Mayors meeting, was among mayors from cities who met with Vice President Joe Biden to hear his pitch on gun control.

Biden met with the mayors one day after he and President Barack Obama unveiled sweeping proposals on gun control.

Leitzell, in a brief interview with a reporter from the Cox Washington Bureau, expressed support for a national gun restriction.

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A restriction on firearms, he said, is “somewhat overdue. I definitely would support some kind of restricting them getting into the hands of certain people. or maybe you have a special hike cost license to open anything. You limit their availability.”

The mayor said, “I think it should have been done awhile ago. I believe people should have guns but I also think there are certain guns that certain people don’t need to have.”

Leitzell also suggested a potential hike in license costs to help limit the availability of guns.

He owns a gun, but would use it only for protection.

Biden told the mayors there is a lot that can be done at the city level, but that change needs to happen now.

“I hope we all agree that mass shootings that we saw 34 days ago in Newtown cannot continue to be tolerated,” the vice president said.

Mayors can help share information on universal background checks and mental health, Biden said.

The president’s $500 million plan marks the most comprehensive effort to tighten gun laws in nearly two decades. He outlined four major legislative proposals: universal background checks for all gun buyers, a crackdown on gun trafficking, a ban on military-style assault weapons and a ban on ammunition magazines holding more than 10 bullets.

In addition to his proposals, the president signed several executive actions, including adding data to the federal background check system and launching a national safe and responsible gun ownership campaign.

Some of the president’s proposals will take effect immediately through executive order. Some may take years to make their way through Congress.

— Staff Writer Meredith Whelchel, a junior at the University of Dayton, co-wrote this story.

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