A group of U.S. lawmakers has unveiled a bill to ban military-style assault weapons, a major component of the Obama administration's gun control proposal.
Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein says the bill is intended "to help end the mass-shootings that have devastated countless families and terrorized communities."
The bill would prohibit the manufacture, importation, and sale of more than 150 military-style firearms, as well as components that can turn less-powerful guns into assault-type weapons. It also limits gun magazines to 10 rounds of ammunition.
Flanked by other Democratic lawmakers, municipal police chiefs, and victims of gun violence, Feinstein said assault weapons have no legitimate civilian use, and enable atrocities like last month's mass-shooting of school children in Newtown, Connecticut.
Poponents of gun ownership rights are expected to oppose the bill. America's main gun-rights lobby, the National Rifle Association, says it is planning a major legislative battle.
The proposed legislation is a more comprehensive version of an assault weapons ban enacted in 1994 that expired a decade later.
The votes may not exist in Congress to pass an assault-weapons ban, but analysts say proposals to regulate and track the sale of firearms, strengthen background check requirements, and keep weapons out of the hands of the mentally ill could become law.