Washington (CNN) - National Rifle Association President David Keene signaled Thursday that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Democrat who has enjoyed the powerful gun lobby's support in the past, could prove pivotal in the heated debate over gun control.
Reid has found himself in a delicate position as he tries to navigate the desires of many members of his pro-gun rights Nevada constituency and the White House and members of his caucus' intensified push over gun control. As Senate majority leader, Reid has great influence to speed or slow the consideration of legislation on Capitol Hill.
Washington (CNN) – The first congressional hearing on gun violence since the Newtown school massacre occurred Wednesday. Highlights of testimony from both sides of the debate are below.
1:53 p.m. ET - Sen. Leahy, wrapping up the hearing, says all of the witnesses at today's hearing have the same goal: preventing gun violence. He said going forward, lawmakers would respect all of the opinions expressed.
He also said he hoped the Judiciary Committee would be able to meet in February to mark-up gun control legislation, and ultimately bring it to the Senate floor.
1:51 p.m. ET - Sen. Mazie Hirono, the Democrat from Hawaii, asked the Baltimore police chief to give thoughts on how to prevent bullying in schools, which she said could lead to violent situations with guns.
James Johnson said police offices in schools can help prevent bullying in schools, but that more work needed to be done on the subject.
1:40 p.m. ET – Speaking at the hearing, Mark Kelly updates senators on today's shooting in Pheonix, where two people have been reported shot.
"While we were having this hearing, and we certainly don’t know the details, but in Phoenix, Arizona, there is another what seems to be possibly a shooting with multiple victims. It doesn't seem like anybody has been killed but initial reports are three people injured in Phoenix, Arizona with multiple shots fired. There are 50 or so police cars on the scene."
1:36 p.m. ET – Asked whether the NRA would sign onto the "Sandy Hook Promise," Wayne LaPierre says his group wants to do everything it can to prevent further gun violence and increase safety in schools.
(CNN) - Former U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, who was shot in the head in 2011, will give the opening statement at Wednesday's Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on gun violence, according to two sources close to Giffords.
It is the first congressional hearing on gun violence since the Connecticut school massacre that left 26 people dead. A top NRA official plans to tell lawmakers Wednesday that new weapons restrictions are not a "serious solution" to the problem.FULL STORY
Washington (CNN) - Wayne LaPierre is not a large man. He does not move with the easy assurance of a skilled fighter. His head sits low on his neck, and he seems to turn from the shoulders.
His swept-back, graying hair and rimless glasses make him look like a Central Casting accountant who sleeps with a tie on. Yet, in Washington, LaPierre is a heavyweight of the first degree, a brawler who can make even brave politicians toss in the towel at the first sign of a scuffle.FULL STORY
Washington (CNN) - A Senate proponent of new gun control measures said Tuesday the National Rifle Association is not the political force it once was and members of Congress should think about that as they consider whether to support restrictions on firearms.
"The reality is that in order to pass this legislation we do have to convince members of Congress that there is not a political price to pay for going against the NRA," Sen. Chris Murphy, a Connecticut Democrat told reporters during a conference call.
(CNN) – Referencing President Barack Obama’s children in a recent television advertisement against gun control was not “particularly helpful,” one of the National Rifle Association’s top lobbyists said.
“I don't think it was particularly helpful, that ad,” said Jim Baker, the top federal government liaison with the NRA Institute for Legislative Action. He spoke in an interview with Reuters, the news agency said.
(CNN) – The National Rifle Association chief issued a blistering retort to President Barack Obama's inaugural address, accusing him of name calling and limiting American freedoms.
Wayne LaPierre had been relatively silent since his controversial response to the shooting massacre in Newtown, Connecticut.FULL STORY
(CNN) – Republican Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey skewered the National Rifle Association Thursday for referencing the president's children in a political attack commercial.
Speaking in a press conference, the outspoken governor decried the move as "reprehensible" and argued the group lost some credibility by making the ad.
(CNN) – The president of the National Rifle Association is standing by the group's new controversial ad that has drawn fire for referencing the president's children, a rare move in a political attack.
David Keene told CNN's Wolf Blitzer on Wednesday that the ad is "not about them specifically," arguing the television commercial was more than just about President Barack Obama's children.
Washington (CNN) - House Democratic leaders in Congress are accusing the National Rifle Association of crossing a line with the group's new ad aimed at President Obama's gun control proposals.
The spot calls attention to the Secret Service protection guarding the President's daughters at their private school in Washington, D.C. The ad goes on to echo the group's proposal for armed police officers at schools nationwide.