WASHINGTON (AP) -- Vice President Joe Biden is taking the White House's campaign for gun control on the road to Virginia.
Biden has a roundtable discussion at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond with experts who worked on gun safety following the 2007 shooting at Virginia Tech.
President Barack Obama wants Congress to require background checks for all gun sales and ban both military-style assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines. The president concedes passage will be difficult, but he also will travel to push the plan. His destinations have yet to be announced.
Virginia has an avidly pro-gun tradition, but lawmakers have been debating a bill to require that private sellers conduct criminal background checks on buyers at gun shows. The current law only requires dealers to conduct the checks.
Also taking part in the discussion, which begins at 11:00 a.m., are Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano, Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius, Deputy U.S. Attorney General Jim Cole, Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA), Rep. Bobby Scott (D-3rd D.), and other Administration officials.
They come to Virginia a day after Christopher Newport University released a survey about how residents feel about gun control. According to the study by the Wason Center, 78 percent of Virginians want the gun show loophole closed and 77 percent support stationing armed police officers in schools. The poll also shows strong opposition to arming teachers or other school employees (68 percent).
Dr. Quentin Kidd, director of the Wason Center, says closing the gun show loophole is supported broadly among Democrats, Republicans, independents, men, women, young and old, and that opposition to the change can be characterized as coming from middle-aged male Republicans.
The survey of 1,015 registered voters in Virginia was conducted Jan. 14-20. The margin of error is +/- 3.1%.