NRA to Speak Out, First Time Since Newtown Massacre

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    NEWSLETTERS

    National Rifle Association says it's been silent past week out of respect for Sandy Hook victims

    (NECN/NBC News: Tracie Potts) - The National Rifle Association speaks out for the first time Friday since the deadly school shooting in Newtown, Conn.

    What might they say as lawmakers press for more gun control?

    The NRA will hold a news conference.

    The NRA says it's been silent this past week out of respect for the victims. But Friday we'll find out what the group has to say about a renewed push for stricter gun laws.

    Another anti-gun protest is planned Friday for outside the DC hotel where the National Rifle Association will speak for the first time since the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre.

    Some of its supporters here are re-thinking gun control and want the NRA involved:

    "They need to be part of this dialogue of how we move forward," said West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin.

    This week after the tragedy saw record gun sales and record buy-backs around the country as Washington considers bringing back the assault weapons ban.

    President Barack Obama's put Vice President Joe Biden in charge of coming up with new ideas. They, too, wait to see what the pro-gun lobby will announce:

    "The NRA is an organization that has members who are mothers and fathers. And I would expect that they've been impacted by this as well. And hopefully they'll do some self-reflection," Obama said.

    Owners say the answer to prevent more violence may be more guns in the hands of law-abiding citizens.

    "As long as you have teachers, kids and administrators in a building that is defenseless or you have people in malls who are defenseless or theaters who are defenseless, this is gonna happen again," said Asheville, N.C. Tea Party Chair Jane Bilello.

    After Columbine and Virginia Tech, the NRA supported a few restrictions, but opposed most.

    The Pew Research Center poll found 49-percent of Americans favor gun control, 42-percent back gun rights. That's the biggest difference since President Obama took office.

    But that bucks the trend of what we've seen in the past decade?

    A decade ago, two-thirds of Americans backed gun control, so it's come down significantly, especially in recent years.