Feinstein: 'Gun owners and gun people' have a 'hammerlock' on Congress

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), who has led the effort in the Senate to pass new gun control legislation, said she does not plan to try again in the wake of the shooting at the Los Angeles International Airport on Friday where a TSA agent was killed.

Feinstein said that passing a gun reform bill through Congress was simply not possible, after a bill failed this year following the shooting at a Newtown, Conn., elementary school.

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“Would I do a bill? Sure I’d do a bill. I believe this down deep in my soul,” Feinstein said on CBS’s “Face the Nation” on Sunday.

But asked whether she thought she could, Feinstein firmly said no.

“I don’t,” she said. “I think there’s a hammerlock on the Congress by the gun owners and gun people, and it doesn’t matter.”

Feinstein was a major part of the push from President Obama and congressional Democrats this past year to expand background checks for gun purchases and reinstate the assault weapons ban after the Newtown shooting.

The measure to expand background checks failed to pass the Senate, and stood little chance in the Republican-controlled House.

Feinstein said that the LAX shooting suspect used a .223 caliber M&P-15 assault rifle, which she said was not designed for use by the general public.

“Now, it’s going to be interesting to see whether this weapon was outlawed in California and purchased in California,” she said.