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Gun control divides candidates in District 45 Assembly race
The Los Angeles Daily News ^ | November 15, 2013 | Dakota Smith

Posted on 11/16/2013 6:05:29 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet

Matt Dababneh, left, and Susan Shelley at a candidate debate for the 45th Assembly District race on Thursday. Voters will decide the fates of Dababneh and Shelley at the polls on Tuesday.

As a gun owner, Glenn Stoddard is wary of tougher gun laws coming out of Sacramento.

That’s one reason the Winnetka resident backs Republican Susan Shelley in next Tuesday’s Assembly District 45 election. Shelley’s opponent, Matt Dababneh, is a Democrat and too liberal on the issue, Stoddard believes.

If Gov. Jerry Brown is faced with new gun legislation next year, “Dababneh would roll over,” Stoddard predicts,“where I think she wouldn’t.”

In a race with few surprises, guns have emerged as a hot topic in the race to represent the 45th District, an area stretching from Calabasas to Northridge. The Brady Campaign’s California chapters have endorsed Dababneh, while websites like are urging gun owners to vote for Shelley in Tuesday’s election, calling her the pro-gun candidate.

At a debate in Canoga Park earlier this week, the two candidates clashed again over the issue, with Shelley arguing that new laws won’t curb gun violence, and Dababneh calling for tougher national restrictions on gun magazine sizes and military-style weapons.

“One of the biggest differences between me and my opponent is that I believe in reasonable gun control measures,” Dababneh told the crowd. Shelley responded by accusing Dababneh of distorting her statements.

The candidates’ contrasting positions reflect the area’s political diversity. Democrats make up 50 percent of the voters in the area. Only a quarter of voters are Republican, but the party is dedicated to their candidates. Strong turnout among conservative voters landed Shelley in the runoff, pushing her ahead of several well-funded Democratic contenders.

The debate over guns in this area comes amid a new focus on California’s gun control laws. Brown signed off on 11 new gun bills this years, laws overseeing assault rifles, high-capacity magazines and lead ammunition. Already, the state has some of the toughest gun laws in the country.

Encouraged by similar recalls in Colorado, Gun Owners of California and other groups announced a recall last month of Sacramento legislators. The coalition plans to target Assembly Speaker John Perez and other politicians who back gun control laws.

Shelley, 54, an author, has quickly become the face of the Republican party in the San Fernando Valley with her anti-government, anti-tax platform. She has said that tougher gun laws are an infringement on people’s personal freedoms and rights.

Mass shootings are a problem, she acknowledges, but incarceration is the answer, she said during the debate. If elected, she said she will seek to repeal Brown’s realignment plan, and return more criminals to federal prison.

“More gun control in California doesn’t solve problems,” Shelley told the crowd.

For his part, Dababneh, 32, said in an interview this week that he doesn’t want to take away the rights of homeowners or hunters to keep guns, but suggested not enough is being done. He supports stronger background checks for gun buyers and a ban on magazine sizes.

“You look at the mass shootings, at LAX, at schools,” said Dababneh, a top deputy to Congressman Brad Sherman. “Anything we can do to reduce that, we need to look at it seriously.”

Such statements have drawn support from Jeff Daar, a member of the county Democratic Party committee and Northridge resident, who is backing Dababneh in the race. Daar has two children, and worries about the safety of his children’s school. Daar said he wants a ban on military-style weapons for recreational use, and a limit to magazine sizes.

“I want something done,” Daar said.

As candidates criss-cross the district, seeking votes at debates in the final weeks of the race, they are rountinely asked where they stand on tougher laws. Shelley drew cheers when she defended gun owners’ rights at Pierce College debate last month. But highlighting the contrasting opinions in this district, Dababneh also drew applause when he criticized “Stand your Ground” laws. “I think when you see what happened with the Trayvon Martin case,” Dababneh told the college students. “I believe California is going down the right path.”

More gun legislation is expected to surface in Sacramento, including a possible return of an assault weapon bill. Earlier this year, Brown vetoed SB374, a bill that would have regulated semi automatic rifles. The bill was opposed by the National Rifle Association, and Brown said the bill was overreaching. In a written statement, he said he didn’t think the “ban on semi-automatic rifles would reduce criminal activity or enhance public safety enough to warrant this infringement on gun owners’ rights.”

TOPICS: California; Campaign News; Issues; Parties
KEYWORDS: banglist; democrats; gop; losangeles

1 posted on 11/16/2013 6:05:29 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Brown signed off on 11 new gun bills this years, laws overseeing assault rifles, high-capacity magazines and lead ammunition.

Actually he signed 4 of them and vetoed 7.

2 posted on 11/16/2013 6:34:05 PM PST by Hugin ( More firepower1)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Depends on the district.

3 posted on 11/16/2013 10:17:57 PM PST by Republican1795.
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To: Hugin
Actually he signed 4 of them and vetoed 7.

Can one assume that those he vetoed would have crumbled at first look from the courts?

4 posted on 11/17/2013 4:48:09 AM PST by trebb (Where in the the hell has my country gone?)
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To: trebb

Well, he vetoed the worst of the bunch, one that would have banned all semi autos. I don’t think any court has thrown one of those out yet.

Jerry Brown is a liberal, but he has never been a party koolaid drinker. Occasionally he will surprise you. I remember back around the OKC bombing when G. Gordon Liddy said if cops in ski masks raid your home at night without announcing themselves his advise was “head shots”, and the liberals were ballistic about it. Brown was a private citizen and was interviewed by a local reporter who asked him what he though about it. He answered that Liddy was right, if someone breaks your door down wearing a ski mask you absolutely have the right to shoot them. The reporter was shocked.

Anyway, here’s a rundown...

5 posted on 11/17/2013 5:08:03 AM PST by Hugin ( More firepower1)
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