Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Monday called for a national ban on assault weapons and for a “vote of conscience” on the issue in Congress after the fatal shootings of 28 people — including 20 children — in Connecticut last week.
"It's time that we as a city have an assault weapons ban, it's time that we as a state have an assault weapons ban, it's time that we as a country have an assault weapons ban," Emanuel said at a Chicago Police Department graduation ceremony, the Chicago Tribune reports
. "And I would hope the leadership in Congress now will have a vote of conscience. It is time to have that vote."
Congress allowed an assault-weapon ban to expire in 2004, and Illinois lawmakers have regularly failed to enact gun-control legislation.
"As somebody who stood by President Clinton's side to make sure we had a ban on assault weapons, I do not want to see more weapons on the street, more guns on the street,” Emanuel said, referring to when President Bill Clinton signed legislation banning such weapons in 1994. “They make your job all that more difficult."
After the ceremony, Chicago Police Supt. Garry McCarthy added that large ammunition clips also should be banned.
"If you ban the assault weapons and don't ban the high-capacity magazines, you’re only putting a Band-Aid on top of it," McCarthy said, the Tribune reports. "You're not fixing it."
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