A movement to ban assault rifles involving representatives from the Christian, Jewish and Muslim communities was launched in a church on Thursday in Portland, Oregon, with clerics saying youths – many of whom have been protesting for gun control – will drive the campaign.
Interfaith religious leaders in Portland said they aim to get enough signatures on petitions to put a ban on assault weapons before voters, in the November election, in a statewide ballot.
There has been some movement in just a few other states in the wake of the February 14 shooting at a Florida high school that killed 17 people, including:
– In Delaware, Governor John Carney on 23 February called for state lawmakers to ban the sale of assault-style rifles, saying military-style weapons like the rifle used in Florida have no place in the hands of civilians. Legislation is now being drafted.
– In California, legislation is proposed that would expand the definition of an assault weapon to include most semi-automatic rifles bigger than a .22. But that would require them to be licenced like assault weapons, not banned.