Milwaukee's mayor and police chief stood next to confiscated rifles Thursday, and spelled out several changes they'd like to see in national and state gun laws.
Mayor Tom Barrett and Police Chief Ed Flynn invited the media in to see some of the 264 military-style assault weapons that Milwaukee Police say they've seized on city streets over the last four years. Mayor Barrett wants congress to ban those weapons that can quickly fire a large number of bullets.
"My view is you don't need that many bullets to shoot a deer, or for self-defense," he says.
Barrett also wants congress to close loopholes that allow some buyers to avoid criminal background checks. Barrett says the Wisconsin legislature should also pass some changes, including preventing habitual criminals from getting a concealed carry permit, and block so-called straw purchases that allow someone to buy a gun for use by a criminal. Chief Flynn says he and the mayor are not talking about taking guns away from law-abiding citizens, but acknowledges state and federal lawmakers have been leery of even modest gun controls. flynn says last week's shootings in Connecticut may bring change.
"Maybe 20 dead babies is it, just maybe," he says.
Flynn's remarks come as Milwaukee newspaper fliers this morning advertised the sale of semi-automatic rifles at the large retailers Cabela's and Gander Mountain. Neither company returned a phone call asking about its gun sales. Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke wrote this week that liberals are using the Sandy Hook [Connecticut] shootings to try to take gun rights away.