Sen. Rob Portman Backs Alternatives To Gun Control

Associated Press

Updated Thu, Aug 15, 2013 11:20 am

Ohio's Republican senator has defended his opposition to legislation on new gun sales restrictions while speaking to a national police officers conference.

Sen. Rob Portman tells the Fraternal Order of Police meeting in Cincinnati that the proposed expansion of background checks for online and private firearms sales wouldn't significantly affect gun violence. Instead, Portman says it would add restrictions on law-abiding gun owners who aren't the problem.

Portman noted Thursday that speakers during Ohio stops in a national bus tour promoting gun-control measures have criticized his vote. He says he doesn't want to play politics with the issue, and supports strengthening background checks for mental health issues among other ways to curb gun violence.

Ohio's Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown supported the private firearms sales legislation.