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Obama Administration wants stricter gun background checks

By Olivia Wilmsen, Multimedia Journalist, olivia.wilmsen@krdo.com
Published On: Jan 03 2014 11:48:49 PM CST

The Obama Administration wants to beef up background checks for gun buyers.

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -

The Obama Administration wants to beef up background checks for gun buyers.

The plan would limit access to guns for people with mental health issues. Another would give health professionals more flexibility in the information they provide to the background check system.

The federal proposal would keep people with mental health issues from buying a firearm. Gun owners wonder if it's political.

"People kill people. Guns don't kill people," said gun owner Joseph Brown.

The Obama Administration wants to expand federal background checks to buy a firearm. It comes three weeks after Arapahoe High School student, Karl Pierson, shot and killed his classmate, Claire Davis, and killed himself.

"Makes me wonder if this is in large part driven by politics," said gun owner Gib Weiskopf.

Republican State Senator Bernie Herpin of Colorado Springs can't change federal law, but will try to repeal expanded background checks in Colorado.

"It's pretty evident that what happened last session did nothing to decrease gun violence," said Herpin.

Defining who's mentally unfit to purchase a firearm may be the most difficult part of the debate.

"How do you define somebody who's mentally ill?" asked Weiskopf.

"We want to be very careful that they don't use this as a way to eliminate all people who maybe seek help because they're going through a depressions, maybe their wife died," said Herpin.

The Obama Administration said it would not ban someone from having a gun simply because they sought treatment.

The White House also wants Congress to tackle gun control issues again this year, but there's little indication lawmakers plan to do that.

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