guns

Oregon lawmakers are considering a measure that would close what some activists call a "loophole" in the state's criminal background check law. It allows gun sales to go through if a background check isn't completed by the end of the next business day.

For the past two years, Joseph Richardson has been trying to figure out how to keep young black men with knife and gunshot wounds from turning up again with similar injuries at Prince George's Hospital Trauma Center outside Washington, D.C.

You’ve heard of sex offender registries. The state of Washington also has a registry for people convicted of gun-related felonies. But it’s hardly used.

Here's one topic Americans can bank on hearing about in next week's State of the Union address: gun control. The reaction to President Obama's announced gun-control measures this week was swift and entirely as expected. Gun-control advocates and many Democrats applauded his efforts; gun-rights groups and many Republicans loudly denounced the orders as executive overreach.

'Week in Review' panel Joni Balter, Matt Manweller, Debora Juarez and KUOW's Bill Radke.
KUOW Photo/Kara McDermott

What should happen to the armed group occupying Oregon's Malheur Wildlife Refuge? What’s the right compromise on guns? When it comes to public bathrooms, who defines your identity? And how do we know Seattle is losing its soul if we can't say what soul is?

Bill Radke attempts soulful clarity with Seattle City Councilmember Debora Juarez (District 5), Seattle Channel's Joni Balter and state Rep. Matt Manweller (R-Ellensburg).

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Daniel LeClair/Reuters

A few days after Sandy Hook, Attorney General Eric Holder traveled to the site of the mass shooting, spoke with first responders and looked at the pictures.

“I was crying. It was without question the worst day that I had as attorney general, and maybe the worst day in my professional life,” Holder said.

Flickr Photo/Chuck Coker (CC BY-ND 2.0) HTTP://BIT.LY/1ZPVQSL

Washington is going to take a different tack on reducing gun violence, Gov. Jay Inslee says: Treat it as a public health problem.

On a weekday morning in January, business is steady at Northwest Armory, a gun store on an Oregon state highway just south of Portland.

Customers lean over glass cases to look at handguns or run their fingers along the polished wood of hunting rifles that line the aisles, aimed at the ceiling. AR-15s hang on hooks and ammunition boxes are stacked up behind a sales clerk, who leans over to talk to an older couple.

When President Obama announced new gun control measures on Tuesday, the White House said they were needed because Congress failed to address the problem of gun violence.

Gun control advocates also are frustrated with lawmakers on Capitol Hill. That's why they've been focused on changing state laws in recent years. And they're succeeding.

Oregon is one state where gun control advocates won last year with the passage of Senate Bill 941, which requires background checks for private party gun sales.

President Barack Obama announced Tuesday that he's taking executive action in an attempt to reduce gun violence. But his actions will mean few immediate changes for many gun buyers in the Northwest.

In this Dec. 9, 2015, photo, a sales associate walks past semiautomatic rifles at Bullseye Sport gun shop in Riverside, Calif.
AP Photo/Jae C. Hong

Bill Radke talks to Senator Patty Murray about President Obama's proposed executive actions on gun control, including tighter rules on background checks.

In this Jan. 26, 2015, file photo, Scott Smith, a supporter of open carry gun laws, wears a pistol as he prepares for a rally in support of open carry gun laws at the Capitol, in Austin, Texas.
AP Photo/Eric Gay, File

Bill Radke speaks with Joanna Paul, of the Washington Alliance for Gun Responsibility, and Dave Workman with the Second Amendment Foundation, about their reaction to President Obama's executive action on gun control. 

President Obama announced executive actions Tuesday, intended to curtail gun violence. But if history is any guide, the president's effort may have the unintended effect of boosting gun sales — 2015 was a banner year.

Saying that America faces a "gun violence epidemic," President Obama is taking "a series of common-sense executive actions" to reduce gun violence Tuesday, the White House says. First among the measures: tighter rules on background checks for gun buyers.

President Obama is announcing a series of executive actions intended to combat gun violence, including a regulatory change designed to make it harder for gun buyers to avoid background checks. Obama plans to detail the moves on Tuesday with a statement in the White House East Room.

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