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In Battle Over Virginia Legislature, Gun Debate Raises Stakes

The proposed gun control reform is set to be considered in mid-November, just days after a Nov. 5 election that will determine who controls Virginia's legislature next year.

By Rebecca Klar

A high-stakes state election in Virginia this year is set to get even more heated as both sides of the gun control debate pour money and resources to reshape an almost evenly split legislature in the wake of recent mass shootings across the country.

At the center of the upcoming battle is a set of comprehensive gun control bills, including universal background checks and a ban on assault weapons, that failed to pass the legislature last month after Gov. Ralph Northam (D) called for a special session following a Virginia Beach shooting that killed 12 people in May.

Democrats blame Republican leadership for abruptly ending the session, saying the National Rifle Association (NRA) and gun rights groups swayed GOP legislators. But Republicans say they wanted more time to examine the policy proposals and accuse Democrats of using the Virginia Beach shooting as a political prop ahead of the election. 

The proposed gun control reform is set to be considered in mid-November, just days after a Nov. 5 election that will determine who controls Virginia's legislature next year. 

 

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