Biden to Dems: Don't Let Politics Foil Gun Control

An LAPD officer stands before collected assault weapons during the LAPD Gun Buyback Program event in the Van Nuys area of north Los Angeles, on December 26, 2012. Los Angeles' no-questions-asked gun buyback event, where weapons could be exchanged for up to $200, was held five months early after the Connecticut school shooting. Gun owners could take their arms to one of two locations in return for a $100 grocery store gift card for handguns, rifles and shotguns, or a $200 card for automatic weapons. AFP PHOTO / JOE KLAMAR (Photo credit should read JOE KLAMAR/AFP/Getty Images)
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WASHINGTON - Vice President Joe Biden is telling Democratic lawmakers that political pressures are no reason to vote against gun-control measures, including a ban on assault weapons.

Biden told House Democrats at their annual retreat in Lansdowne, Va., that the world has changed since 1994. That's when an assault-weapons ban passed by Congress was blamed for costing Democrats control of the House and Senate because they supported it.

Many gun-control proponents are concerned opposition from the powerful National Rifle Association could keep lawmakers from backing legislation this time around.

Biden says public attitudes have evolved. He says lawmakers should vote for what they believe, but he doesn't want to hear them say they can't take on gun violence because it's too politically dangerous.