WASHINGTON — In Alaska, state House Speaker Mike Chenault says he's heard complaints from all over the state about the federal government "trampling" on gun owners' 2nd Amendment rights.
In Pennsylvania, state Rep. Daryl Metcalfe declares that gun control advocates have "gone far enough." And in North Dakota, state Rep. Roscoe Streyle says, "We know what's right for our citizens."
They are among a wave of lawmakers in at least 20 states who are pushing back against the Obama administration's drive to pass tougher gun laws after the Newtown, Conn., school shooting. They seek to exempt their states from any new federal regulations.
Even before Congress votes on new gun laws, some state legislators are intent on promoting bills like the Firearms Freedom Act — introduced in Alabama, Michigan and Oklahoma, among other states — based on a theory that guns and ammunition made and kept within state borders do not involve interstate commerce and are out of Washington's reach.