Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Vice President Joe Biden and former U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords are all dubbed “The Gunfighters” on the latest cover of TIME. The full cover story will be posted here Wednesday afternoon. TIME’s Michael Scherer previews his story about the growing call for gun regulation:
It’s been Washington’s worst kept secret: Just what new gun regulations will Barack Obama and Joe Biden recommend in the wake of the Sandy Hill Elementary mass shooting? From the beginning, the White House telegraphed its plans in public statements and private conversations with stakeholders. Obama even listed the biggest measures recently, claiming there was a “growing consensus” around a new assault weapons ban, expanding background checks and banning the sale of high-magazine clips. In the weeks that followed, Biden dropped even more hints, talking about freeing up federal agencies to conduct more gun research, while aides made clear that a new federal gun trafficking statute was in the cards.
The Biden process, with dozens of meeting over several weeks, has been enormously productive, just not in the way that it has been described in most news reports. That’s because it has been largely focused on building a broad coalition of advocates from diverse segments of American society to press for the measures once they are announced. Biden met with cops, gun control groups, victims groups, clergy, mayors, educators, and other law enforcement and medical professionals. Anything that passes Congress in the coming months or years restricting gun access will depend heavily on the public pressure that these groups can bring to bear.