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Bloomberg, mayor group behind $12 million gun control campaign

President Obama weighed in once again in the fight over guns. In his weekly address, the president said each of his proposals to reduce gun violence should get a vote in Congress, including a ban on assault weapons. NBC's Lester Holt reports.

A $12 million television ad campaign paid for by Mayors Against Illegal Guns hopes to push gun control efforts including comprehensive background checks.

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the group's co-chair, announced the ad buy Saturday. The New York Times reported Bloomberg is financing the campaign.

“I don’t think there’s ever been an issue where the public has spoken so clearly, where Congress hasn’t eventually understood and done the right thing," Bloomberg told NBC News' David Gregory in an interview that will be broadcast Sunday on “Meet the Press.”


The ads will target both Democratic and Republican senators in key states.

One of the ads portrays a middle-aged man sitting on the back of a pick-up truck and holding a rifle.

"I've owned a gun all my life and I'll fight for my right to keep it," the man says. "Background checks have nothing to do with taking guns away from anyone," he adds.

The ad urges viewers to tell Congress to vote in support of comprehensive background checks. There is no mention in the ad of an assault weapons ban, but Bloomberg told Gregory he still hopes Congress could pass one.

“We’ve been fighting since 2007 to get a vote. We are going to have a vote on – for sure – on assault weapons and we’re going to have a vote on background checks," he said.

"And if we were to get background checks only it wouldn’t be as good as if we got both, but we demanded a plan and then we demanded a vote. We’ve got the plan, we’re going to get the vote.”