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More politicians join onto the Daily News anti-gun campaign

Raymond Kelly, Bill de Blasio, Bill Thompson and others say enough is enough

 

BY IRVING DEJOHN / NEW YORK DAILY NEWS 

The city's luminaries have one Christmas wish this year: an end to the gun madness.

Several local leaders - including Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly - joined the Daily News' ongoing campaign for banning assault weapons and high-capacity magazines on Tuesday.

"Every little bit helps," the city's top cop said after signing the petition. "I think it's important to let the federal government know that something has got to change."

Kelly, who served as the Under Secretary for Enforcement for the Department of Treasury during the Clinton Administration, is no stranger to the halls of Congress. He said serious reform needs to come from "both sides of the aisle" - as it did when an assault weapons ban passed in 1994.

It expired in 2004.

"The ban in 1994 made sense - there's no need for people to have weapons of war and clips that hold 30 or more rounds of ammunition," Kelly said. "It makes no sense in a civilized society."

Kelly was among several of the city's heavy-hitters to dole out food to hungry Harlem residents during the Rev. Al Sharpton's annual Christmas event.

Sharpton, who also pledged his support to the News' campaign, said the families of Newton, Conn. will celebrate the holiday with heavy hearts due to senseless gun violence.

"This is a tragic day for them. This is the first Christmas they don't have their babies," he said.

Sharpton vowed to "mobilize" in 2013 for a ban on the military-style weapons.

"This is a day for us to come together and call for a ban on assault weapons," he said.

The News' ongoing crusade, now joined by more than 75,000 people, is also gaining momentum with the city's mayoral candidates.

"We've got to end this once and for all," said Public Advocate Bill de Blasio, who proudly hoisted New York's hometown paper after writing his name. "I applaud the Daily News for taking the lead.

"If we can't stand up to the gun industry we can't protect this city," added de Blasio, a mayoral hopeful.

His Democratic rival, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, signed the petition Sunday after hearing NRA Vice President Wayne LaPierre call for armed guards in schools.

Former City Controller Bill Thompson, another pol who hopes to move to Gracie Mansion, didn't hesitate to write his John Hancock on the petition, too.

"We have gone through a tough year," he said. "It's been past time to address this issue."

 

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