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Obama unveils $500M gun violence package

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TWC News: Obama unveils $500M gun violence package
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At a Wednesday morning press conference, President Barack Obama announced a $500 million package of executive actions and legislative proposals aimed at reducing gun violence a month after a mass shooting in Connecticut killed 20 elementary school children.

Obama also detailed several parts of a 23-item package of executive actions--which requires no congressional approval--aimed at curbing gun violence.

He first called on Congress to require background checks for all sales of firearms, including sales between private individuals. The president said that while checks are already required for sales from licensed gun brokers, they are not required for private sales. About 40 percent of gun sales nationally don’t require background checks, President Obama said.

"If you want to buy a gun, whether it’s from a dealer or from a private seller, you should at least have to show that you are not a felon or somebody legally prohibited from buying one,” the president said. “This is common sense.”

He also called for a ban on “military-style” assault weapons and a 10-round limit on magazines. The president recalled the weapons used in the massacre inside of an Aurora, Colo. movie theater last summer and the recent shooting in a Connecticut elementary school.

President Obama insisted that Congress must be tougher on individuals who circumvent current firearms laws.

“If there’s even one life that can be saved, then we have an obligation to try,” President Obama said. “I’m going to do my part.”

In addition, Obama will nominate Todd Jones as director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Jones currently is the acting director of the agency.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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