INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Freshman Democratic Sen. Joe Donnelly is opposing a ban
on assault weapons sought by President Barack Obama.
A Donnelly spokesman told The Associated Press Wednesday that the Indiana
lawmaker will vote against the ban but has not decided whether he would
support universal background checks.
Donnelly represents a key bloc of moderate to conservative Democrats the
president must win over. The announcement also marks a key early stance from
Donnelly just a few months after winning a state that went heavily for
Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney in last year’s election.
Donnelly called himself “a strong supporter of the Second Amendment” in a
statement issued shortly before the Senate Judiciary Committee opened a
hearing featuring testimony from National Rifle Association CEO Wayne
LaPierre and former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords.