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Virginia GOP previously blocked bill to ban large-capacity magazine sales

Rich Lindgren places 12 U.S. flags in the ground at a makeshif memorial outside of the crime scene at the Virginia Beach Municipal Center June 01, 2019 in Virginia Beach, Virginia.
A makeshif memorial outside Virginia Beach Municipal Center. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

A state bill seeking to ban sales of large-capacity magazines similar to those used by the Virginia Beach gunman was rejected in committee in a GOP party-line vote in January, the Washington Post first reported Saturday.

Details: The move against the bill, SB1748, received little public attention because it was seen as a foregone conclusion, according to the Post.

The big picture: Mike Fox, the legislative lead for the Charlottesville chapter of Moms Demand Action, tweeted a series of gun control bills the GOP had blocked. Gun Violence Prevention Caucus co-chair Sen. Adam P. Ebbin (D-Alexandria), who sponsored SB1748, told the Post a big reason for the bills' failure was "the political influence of gun rights organizations."

The other side: Gun rights groups have accused those calling for greater weapons control of politicizing a tragedy. National Rifle Association spokesperson Dana Loesch responded to a tweet by Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) calling for the U.S. to "immediately confront the power of the NRA" following the Virginia Beach shooting.

"This was a heinous tragedy. Your remarks move me to ask: What do 5 million members of the NRA have to do with this man’s crime? Was this man a card-carrying member? His purchases were legal, whose fault is that? Does he bear any blame at all? Serious questions."

Go deeper: The deadliest mass shootings in modern U.S. history