Updated 02/10/2013 11:08 AM
Governor reacts to gun control opposition
Gun control continues to be a hot button issue for many in New York State. With many urging a repeal, there is a rally planned at the state Capitol next week. Nick Reisman has more on the latest opposition to the law and the governor's reaction.
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ALBANY, N.Y. -- It's been nearly a month since New York adopted the first gun control laws in the country following the Connecticut school shooting that killed 20 children and six adults. Now rallies for and against the law are being planned next week at the Capitol and proposals to change the law are emerging. Governor Andrew Cuomo, whose popularity dipped according to a Quinnipiac poll last week, praised legislators for voting yes, comparing it to his father Mario Cuomo's stance opposing the death penalty.
“The legislators did show political courage akin to the courage that it took to oppose the death penalty, I think that's true,” Cuomo said.
A Siena College poll shows that a broad majority of New York voters back the gun control law and its expansion of the assault weapons ban, along with a reduction in high-capacity magazine rounds. The governor said in a radio interview Thursday that those who oppose the law are outnumbered.
Cuomo said, “The opposition is a minority, but they are a vocal minority and an energized and organized minority, that's the NRA, and politically they are threatening.”
And yet there's a realization that the gun control law cost political capital. Cuomo sent a letter to lawmakers last week praising their courage in voting yes.
Meanwhile, rallies for and against the law are planned for next Tuesday at the Capitol. The group One Million Moms For Gun Violence will hold a demonstration in support of the law. Another protest will include Republican lawmakers and the party's 2010 gubernatorial candidate Carl Paladino. Here's Paladino at an anti-gun control rally in Buffalo from last month.
“I'm sure that the great majority who voted for this bill have no a clue what an assault weapon looks like,” Paladino said.
Senate Republicans, meanwhile, plan changes to the law, including clarifying provisions for the high-capacity rounds and exempting law enforcement from the measure.
“As I reflect back, perhaps we did act in haste and you'll see at some point there will be amendments to fix some of the mistakes,” Senate Republican Leader Dean Skelos.
Senate Co-President Jeff Klein said at a forum in New York City this week that he is open to considering the carve out for law enforcement.