HELENA — U.S. Sen. Max Baucus helped block a bipartisan effort to increase restrictions on gun sales.
The Senate voted Wednesday to reject expanded background checks to more gun sales, instead of just those handled by licensed firearms dealers.
Baucus said Montanans have told him “loud and clear that they are overwhelmingly opposed to new gun control laws.” The six-term senator says the Obama administration needs to do a better job of enforcing current laws.
U.S. Sen. Jon Tester voted in support of the background checks.
Baucus says he will support a Republican amendment that instead focuses on a violent crime study, along with help for school safety and assisting mental health problems.
Baucus said he is also opposing proposals from fellow Democrats to ban assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines.
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