Virginia lawmakers reject assault weapon ban

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam, center, gestures as he delivers his State of the Commonwealth address as House Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn, D-Fairfax, right, and Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax, left, listen before a joint session of the Virginia Assembly at the state Capitol in Richmond, Va., Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2020. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam’s push to ban the sale of assault weapons has failed after members of his own party balked at the proposal.

Moderate Democrats joined Republicans on a Senate committee Monday in rejecting legislation that would have prohibited the sale of certain semiautomatic firearms, including popular AR-15 style rifles, and banned the possession of magazines that hold more than 12 rounds.

The bill was a top priority for Northam, a Democrat who has campaigned heavily for a broad package of gun-control measures.

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