Lawmakers examine ways to reduce gun violence, protect second amendment

By WEEK Producer

February 12, 2013 Updated Feb 12, 2013 at 10:31 PM CDT

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- U.S. Senator Dick Durbin says that current gun laws are not enough to end the epidemic of gun violence facing the nation.

Tuesday, Durbin chaired a hearing on capitol hill concerning gun violence and the second amendment.

The Democrat called for universal background checks on gun sales and limiting the number of bullets in magazines.

The top Republican on the panel, Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, disagrees with the proposal, stating the public's constitutional rights should be protected. "Stripping the constitutional rights of law-abiding citizens does nothing to stop criminals from carrying out violent crimes," Sen. Cruz.

"All of these proposals are common sense. All of them have strong support among the American Public and all of them, I believe, are clearly consistent with the constitution and the second amendment of the bill of rights," Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois.

More than 100 families who have been effected by gun violence attended Tuesday's hearing, including the parents of slain Chicago teen Hadiyah Pendelton.

The 15-year-old was shot and killed in Chicago two weeks ago, just days after performing at some of President Obama's recent inauguration festivities.

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