(CNN) - Republican Sen. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania blamed political polarization for the failure of last month's background check compromise he reached with Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin, saying some in his party simply voted against the measure to prevent the president from winning a legislative victory.
"In the end, it didn't pass because we're so politicized. There were some on my side who did not want to be seen helping the president do something he wanted to get done, just because the president wanted to do it," Toomey said.
(CNN) – California Gov. Jerry Brown, a Democrat, signed legislation Wednesday that will boost funding for state efforts to confiscate firearms from those prohibited by law from owning them, the governor's office announced.
The bill gives $24 million from the Dealers' Record of Sale fund - fees paid by gun owners at the time of purchase - to the state's Department of Justice to help clear the backlog of individuals who once purchased a gun but are now barred from possessing firearms.
(CNN) – When Sen. Kelly Ayotte was defending her vote on Tuesday on a recent gun control proposal, she was confronted by the daughter of a victim in the Newtown, Connecticut, elementary school massacre.
Speaking at her first town hall event in New Hampshire since the gun vote earlier this month, the Republican senator sought to explain why she voted against a measure that would expand background checks on firearms sales.
(CNN) - Heading into last week's gun control vote, polls showed that nearly nine in 10 Americans favored background checks not currently required by law for gun sales–a rarely seen, overwhelming amount of support for a piece of legislation in Washington.
Now that the Senate actually failed to pass such a measure, a new poll indicates Americans aren't as upset about the unsuccessful bill.
(CNN) - Vice President Joe Biden spoke Saturday about the loss of life this week at the Boston Marathon and the West, Texas fertilizer plant explosion, passionately explaining that news of one loss "brings home immediately, vividly the moment you learned of your loss."
After noting the deaths in Massachusetts and Texas, Biden recalled the December massacre at the Newtown, Connecticut elementary school, saying those instances showed the "incredible resilience, heroism, commitment and love of the people who responded to these tragedies."
Washington (CNN) – After Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid announced that he was pulling the gun legislation bill, the odds that any new restrictions on guns would move in the Republican-led House shifted from slim to virtually none.
"Right now it doesn't look good," New York Republican Rep. Peter King told CNN, summing up the chances that his bill - identical to the bipartisan compromise developed in the Senate expanding background checks for many gun sales - could pass in the House.
Washington (CNN) - The Democrat who worked to expand background checks in the Senate told a group of reporters Thursday that the National Rifle Association's "scoring system," in which the group grades members of Congress, combined with members' fear of being seen as flip-floppers, derailed the measure.
Sen. Joe Manchin, D-West Virginia, who worked alongside Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Pennsylvania, said the NRA's decision to include votes on the bipartisan amendment in its important rankings dissuaded members in pro-gun states from stepping up. "If they hadn't scored it, we'd have gotten 70 votes," he said. "I predict 70 votes without a scoring." He also vowed to bring the measure back at some point for a vote.
(CNN) – Former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords lambasted the 46 senators who voted against an ill-fated bipartisan proposal to expand background checks on firearms sales and vowed to continue her fight for tougher gun laws.
"Speaking is physically difficult for me," Giffords wrote in a New York Times opinion piece published online after the Senate rejected the compromise on Wednesday. "But my feelings are clear: I'm furious. I will not rest until we have righted the wrong these senators have done."
Washington (CNN) - Two women whose lives were touched by recent mass shootings shouted in the Senate chamber "shame on you" just after lawmakers defeated a bipartisan proposal to expand background checks on gun sales.
After the outburst on Wednesday, Vice President Joe Biden, who was presiding in the Senate, called for order. The women were later expelled from the Capitol although it did not appear they were arrested.
Washington (CNN) – Four months after the massacre at a Connecticut elementary school, the gun-control proposal with arguably the best chance of passing through Congress went down to defeat. And in this case, a powerful gun lobby, coupled with 2014 campaign politics, trumped public opinion.
A bipartisan yet controversial proposal that would have extended current background checks for gun buyers to include gun shows and internet sales Wednesday fell six votes shy of the 60 needed in the Senate to advance through the chamber. The amendment by Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Republican Sen. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania went down in defeat even though just about every national poll conducted the past couple of months indicated that the vast majority of Americans supported tougher background checks.