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McCain hosts gun-focused town hall in Phoenix

McCain speaks at a town hall event in Phoenix. (Jim Cross/KTAR)

PHOENIX -- Sen. John McCain held a town hall Wednesday in Phoenix that focused almost entirely on gun control in America.

A crowd of about 150 appeared to be evenly divided by gun supporters and opponents. McCain told the crowd that Congress will not pass an assault weapons ban. Karen Teves, whose son Alex was killed in the Aurora, Colo. movie theater shooting, said she was not pleased with McCain's assertion that an assault weapons ban is out of the question.

"What he doesn't realize that 81 percent of Americans, 71 percent of gun owners and 60 percent of NRA members support renewing the assault weapons ban," she said.

McCain did not say if he supports or opposes universal background checks for all gun buyers which many believe will close the so-called gun show loophole.

"Obviously we have two goals: Keeping guns out of the hands of criminals and the mentally ill," he said. "We need to take measures to achieve that."

That assault weapons ban was signed into law by former President Bill Clinton in 1994 and expired in 2004.

At a Sun Lakes town hall Tuesday, McCain was http://ktar.com/?sid=1611668&nid=29" >grilled about immigration reform. It was a much calmer town hall on Wednesday.

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About the Author


Position: Senior News Reporter. Started with KTAR July 4, 1999.

Favorite spots in Arizona: Pinetop-Lakeside, Alpine, Greer.

Have covered some of the biggest stories in Arizona including nine of the top 10 largest wildfires in state history. The Wallow Fire in 2011 became the largest fire in state history. Rodeo-Chediski Fire in June 2002, which is the second largest fire in Arizona. Covered the Yarnell Hill Tragedy in June 2013 that left 19 Granite Mountain Hotshots dead.

Favorite movies: True Grit, both 1969 John Wayne classic and the remake with Jeff Bridges and Lonesome Dove.

Sports Teams: Washington State University Cougars, Texas Longhorns, The University of Montana Grizzlies.

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