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As others see it: Grassley fails Iowans

ryan mcgaughey/daily globe U.S. Sen. Charles Grassley speaks during town meeting in George, Iowa.

Sen. Chuck Grassley bucked national opinion to make a point.

We hope he can live with it.

Americans cannot.

Poll after poll consistently showed 80 percent or more of Americans favored background checks for all gun buyers, not just some. In national polls, that support prevailed among Republicans and Democrats and gun owners as well.

The background checks required in the Senate bill narrowly defeated Wednesday would not prevent all future shooting sprees. But they definitely would slow down the unhinged individuals attempting to skirt the law to build an arsenal for a public assault. The bill would not introduce new restrictions. Rather, it would apply regulations common for most gun sales to the auctions, private party and Internet sales that have emerged as dodges to the current regulations.

The bill creates no national registry. It takes guns away from no one and prevents few from obtaining guns.

A majority of U.S. voters have supported tougher background checks. Those numbers went off the charts after Newtown, Conn., shootings, when exasperated Americans looked to Congress to do something.

The compromise bill before the Senate didn't touch the massive ammo clips that fuel the body counts for these terror shooters. It didn't put a single new limitation on automatic or semi-automatic weapons.

It simply required all -- not just some -- gun buyers to face a background check.

So who is Grassley representing?

His vote certainly represents the Republican minority. Just four Republicans, including Illinois' Mark Kirk and former GOP presidential contender John McCain, chose to vote with the American people.

Grassley definitely represents the views of the National Rifle Association, which responded to Newtown with a plan to put high-powered weapons in every school in an attempt to outgun heavily armed shooters. ...