Obama Pushes for New Ban on 'Assault Weapons' and Tougher Background Checks

WASHINGTON, D. C. - President Obama pushes for new ban on 'assault weapons,' a 10-round limit on magazine capacity, and tougher background checks without congressional action as part of a comprehensive gun-violence proposal.

In front of school children on the stage, he says he will issue executive orders immediately, and calls on Congress to pass laws. He says his critics will warn of "an assault on liberty" and try to block his orders.

Obama says that 70% of NRA membership agrees with tougher back ground checks.

He says that it 'can't just be the usual suspects' who demand change, but the call must come from 'other parts of the country.' He says citizens must call on their legislators to demand action, as he listed sites of mass shootings in recent years.

Obama is taking 23 executive actions aimed at curbing gun violence that don't require congressional action, including measures to encourage schools to hire police officers, increase research on gun violence and improve efforts to prosecute gun crime.

The executive actions are part of an overarching package assembled by a task force led by Vice President Joe Biden. The measures come a month after the mass shooting in Newtown, that killed 20 elementary school children.

Obama is directing the Centers for Disease Control to research gun violence and is seeking rules to ensure that law enforcement conducts background checks before returning seized firearms.

He intends to nominate Todd Jones as director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

Jones is the agency's acting director.

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