A Republican member of the bipartisan group seeking a deal on background checks for gun owners said Sunday that lawmakers remain at odds.

“I don't think we're that close to a deal,” Sen. Tom CoburnThomas (Tom) Allen CoburnPension insolvency crisis only grows as Congress sits on its hands Paul Ryan should realize that federal earmarks are the currency of cronyism Republicans in Congress shouldn't try to bring back earmarks MORE (R-Okla.) said on Fox News Sunday.

Coburn is working with Sens. Chuck SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerCan Mueller be more honest than his colleagues? Throwing some cold water on all of the Korean summit optimism House Republicans push Mulvaney, Trump to rescind Gateway funds MORE (D-N.Y.), Joe ManchinJoseph (Joe) ManchinRand's reversal advances Pompeo West Virginia GOP Senate candidate says he’d like to waterboard opioid dealers Overnight Health Care: Teen pregnancy program to focus on abstinence | Insurers warn against short-term health plan proposal | Trump VA pick faces tough sell MORE (D-W.Va.) and Mark KirkMark Steven KirkHigh stakes as Trump heads to Hill Five things to watch for at Trump-Senate GOP meeting Giffords, Scalise highlight party differences on guns MORE (R-Ill.) to craft language acceptable to both parties. The Washington Post reported Saturday that the group was “on the verge” of an agreement that would greatly increase the likelihood of gun-control legislation getting through the Senate.

ADVERTISEMENT
Coburn warned that any talk of registering gun owners would doom the effort.

“There absolutely will not be record-keeping on legitimate, law-abiding gun-owners in this country,” he said. “And if they want to eliminate the benefits of actually trying to prevent the sales to people who are mentally ill and to criminals, all they have to do is create a record-keeping. And that will kill this bill. So if you really want to improve it, you have to eliminate the record-keeping.”

President Obama has made the push for gun control a centerpiece of his second term agenda, calling for background checks and for Congress to ban the sales of assault weapons and high-capacity magazines. But background checks are seen as the most likely to pass Congress this year in the face of strong opposition from the nation's gun lobby.

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick LeahyPatrick Joseph LeahyCongress should build on the momentum from spending bill Overnight Tech: Zuckerberg grilled by lawmakers over data scandal | What we learned from marathon hearing | Facebook hit with class action lawsuit | Twitter endorses political ad disclosure bill | Uber buys bike share Overnight Cybersecurity: Zuckerberg faces grilling in marathon hearing | What we learned from Facebook chief | Dems press Ryan to help get Russia hacking records | Top Trump security adviser resigning MORE (D-Vt.) on Sunday said he was optimistic that a gun bill could pass Congress, but cautioned that he would only move legislation that had bipartisan support.