Wounding The Gun Lobby

A populist backlash against random violence and the small-arms race nicks the once bulletproof NRA

Until a few weeks ago, the National Rifle Association's well-planned ambush of New Jersey seemed as if it might succeed. The specific target was the state's three-year-old ban on military-style semiautomatic weapons. Relentless lobbying and fistfuls of NRA campaign money appeared to have done the job. Never mind that polls showed 80% of New Jersey residents in favor of the ban -- both houses of the state legislature voted last summer to repeal most of , it. When Democratic Governor Jim Florio vetoed their action, the assembly voted in February to override. The senate was expected to follow suit last week....

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