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Ricketts opposes new gun control measures in wake of massacres
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Ricketts opposes new gun control measures in wake of massacres

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Democrats are making a new push to enact the first major new gun control laws in more than two decades, starting with stricter background checks.

Gov. Pete Ricketts on Thursday issued a statement opposing efforts to impose or enact new gun control measures in the wake of the two latest mass killings of Americans.

"Nebraska is a pro-Second Amendment state, and we will stand up against any attempt by the federal government to expand gun laws and impede our freedoms," Ricketts said.

Pete Ricketts

Ricketts

The governor's statement was issued in response to reports that President Biden is calling on Congress to enact an assault weapons ban and impose tougher background checks for the purchase of guns.

Biden also was reportedly considering independent steps that his administration might be able to take to impose restrictions through executive orders without congressional action.

Two mass shootings within the past week left 18 people dead, including the massacre of 10 people at a supermarket in Boulder, Colorado, by a 21-year-old suspect who has been described by family members as paranoid and anti-social.

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The other attack occurred in Atlanta and appeared to have been triggered by an anti-Asian racial bias.

"Nebraska will stand up for gun rights," Ricketts said in a news release.

"In the wake of recent tragedies in Atlanta and Boulder, President Biden is attempting to build momentum for new gun control measures," the governor stated.

"The president should work to address underlying issues in the community rather than limit our right to bear arms, which is protected in the U.S. Constitution."

Banning guns "will not solve the underlying problems that have resulted in these tragedies," Ricketts said.

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Congressional Democrats have been calling for expansion of background checks and Biden has suggested that "we should also ban assault weapons in the process."

Sens. Dianne Feinstein of California and Rep. David Cicilline of Rhode Island have introduced legislation that would revive a 1994 ban that expired 10 years later.

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Reach the writer at 402-473-7248 or dwalton@journalstar.com.

On Twitter @LJSdon

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