CHICAGO (CBS) – Spurred by the Newtown school shooting massacre, Mayor Rahm Emanuel was leading a coalition of Chicago area mayors in a renewed drive for stronger gun control laws.
WBBM Newsradio Political Editor Craig Dellimore reports the mayor said, in the past 24 hours, he’s recruited 22 more mayors and village presidents to join “Mayors Against Illegal Guns,” in pushing for a ban on assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines, and demanding background checks on all gun sales. The group already boasts having more than 725 mayors from big cities and small towns from across the country.
“There are moments in time that sear to the public a debate, and is a tipping point in galvanizing forces and bringing people together,” Emanuel said.
Maywood Mayor Henderson Yarbrough admitted the proposed laws would not keep guns out of every maniac’s hands.
“What we have to do as elected officials, as police officers, etc., is to do the very best we can to reduce, just keep reducing it as much as possible,” he said.
Evanston Mayor Elizabeth Tisdahl said preventing just one murder is enough.
Teresa Kernc, mayor of Diamond – a town an hour south of Chicago, and a community with a lot of hunters – said she backs the gun control measures her fellow mayors are demanding.
“Gun violence impacts communities all across the country, regardless of their size, regardless of their income, and regardless of their diversity,” she said.
Lynwood Mayor Eugene Williams said, even as a child growing up in the Robert Taylor Homes public housing complex in Chicago, he and his friends could see guns were dangerous.
“It is time for the adults to kind of catch on. Let’s get it, let’s do something about this, because there are a lot of people shouldn’t have guns in their hands,” he said. “And our young people who are most vulnerable to this, they know it, and they’re expecting us to do something.”
Emanuel said he hopes the shooting deaths of 20 children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., will spur action on meaningful gun control this time.