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Incoming GOP Majority leader Rep. Steinke does not support limiting gun access


KAUKAUNA, WI (WTAQ) - A Republican state legislative leader says he will not support bills which limit access to guns. Kaukauna Representative Jim Steineke, the incoming assistant majority leader, says any legislation should focus on the people who commit crimes – and not just the guns themselves.

Gun control has been a hot topic for the new session, in the wake of the Connecticut school massacre and a pair of killing sprees in the Milwaukee area.

Steineke tells Gannett Wisconsin Media that Connecticut has some of the nation’s strictest gun laws and quote, “I don’t know what law we could have put in place that would have averted that tragedy.”

In the last session, two Democratic gun control measures never got to the public hearing stage.

One would have required criminal background checks for those who buy guns at shows or from other owners.

The other would have required semi-automatic handguns to produce micro-stamps on all the cartridges they fire.

Critics blame the National Rifle Association’s intense lobbying for striking down any gun limitations.

Gannett said the NRA spent $108,000 and 676 hours lobbying Wisconsin lawmakers in 2011 and the first half of this year.

Senate Democrat Fred Risser of Madison has been trying for years to pass gun control bills – and he says he’ll try again in the new session. He says he understands the formidable odds – but after what happened in Connecticut, Risser believes gun control has a better chance of passing now.