Va. Gov. McDonnell Considering Opinions Before Repealing Gun Law

Va. Tech shooting victims reach out to Gov. McDonnell on gun law repeal.

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    Bob McDonnell

    Parents of Virginia Tech survivors and victims of the 2007 campus massacre urged Gov. Bob McDonnell on Saturday to keep in place a law that allows the purchase of only one handgun a month.

    McDonnell held a conference call Saturday with the families of Virginia Tech survivors and victims. A spokesman for the governor told the Associated Press that McDonnell "appreciated hearing directly from the families on this issue.''

    "It was a straightforward and substantive discussion,'' said the spokesman, J. Tucker Martin. "His thoughts and prayers remain with them as they continue to deal with their tremendous loss. We will have further comment on the legislation at the appropriate time.''

    Andrew Goddard, whose son was wounded in the Virginia Tech shooting that left 33 dead, including the gunman, told the AP that "I hold out hope that [the Governor] will take into account the 66 percent of the people in the polls who want to keep this thing.'' Goddard said that the Governor vowed that he would inform the families of his decision early next week. 

    The Virginia Senate passed legislation earlier this month repealing the 1993 law, all but ensuring the demise of a statute enacted after the state became a notorious supplier of guns used in crimes in major East Coast cities. In 1991, the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms found that 40 percent of the 1,236 guns found at crime scenes in New York had been purchased in Virginia.

    The families of Virginia Tech students, as well as survivors of the 2007 campus massacre, have been active in Virginia and elsewhere to limit the sale of handguns.