Despite violence, push for tougher gun laws flagging

WASHINGTON — Gun control advocates sputter at their faltering efforts. The National Rifle Association is politically ascendant. And President Obama’s White House pledges to safeguard the Second Amendment in its first official response to the deaths of at least 12 people in a mass shooting at a screening of the new Batman.

Once, every highly publicized outbreak of gun violence produced strong calls from Democrats and a few Republicans for tougher controls on firearms.

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