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D.C. Leaders Outraged By Gun Bill

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By Patrick Madden

The grief over a recent series of deadly shootings in D.C. is turning to anger as Congress takes up a bill to strip the city of its tough gun control laws. Spurred on by family members of some of the victims, city leaders in the District are now striking a more confrontational tone with lawmakers on Capitol Hill.

The gathering outside City Hall to protest the gun bill included the mayor, the council, activists, and victims family members. And it was clear, as speaker after speaker took to the podium, the tone and tenor toward Congress is changing.

Ron Moten of Peaceaholics says it's time to become "extremists".

"We must stand up. We must take the streets. We must protest. We must shutdown bridges. Because they don't hear this," says Moten.

Ilir Zherka, is the director of D.C. Vote, which has long favored lobbying over street protests.

"Today we are coming out swinging," says Zherka.

Even Councilmember Phil Mendelson, known for his soft-spoken style and measured tone, issued a challenge to the gun bill's sponsors in the Senate.

"And so I am here to say to Mr. McCain and Mr. Tester, I want to meet with, why haven't you talked with us" asks Mendelson.

The senators say D.C. isn't in compliance with a 2008 Supreme Court ruling.


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