Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., is up for re-election in 2014. / Manuel Balce Ceneta, AP
Correction: This story has been updated to reflect that Sens. Landrieu and Baucus opposed extending the assault weapons ban in 2004.
President Obama admits he faces an uphill battle in getting his gun proposals through a wary Congress. The politics of the 2014 election partly explains why.
While much has been made about the GOP-controlled House being recalcitrant, the Democratic-controlled Senate isn't exactly a cakewalk. For starters, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada -- who would normally do the heavy lifting to get Obama's legislation through the chamber -- voted against the 1994 assault weapons ban.
Twenty Democratic Senate seats are up for grabs in 2014, many of them in states with high gun ownership. Some of those Democrats weren't effusive about Obama's proposals that were outlined Wednesday:
Louisiana Sen. Mary Landrieu said in a statement that she will be "reviewing the proposals put forth by the administration and will give them serious consideration as they are brought for debate in the Senate." She voted against extending the assault weapons ban in 2004.
Sen. Max Baucus of Montana wasn't an automatic "yes" vote, either. "Before passing new laws, we need a thoughtful debate that respects responsible, law-abiding gun owners in Montana instead of one-size-fits-all directives from Washington," Baucus is quoted as saying in Roll Call. He also voted against extending the weapons ban in 2004.
Minnesota Sen. Al Franken says he'll support tightening background checks and putting limits on ammunition magazines. As for the assault weapons ban, Franken on Thursday issued a statement after he said the Rochester Post-Bulletin "mischaracterized" his position in a newspaper story.
"I also support the principle that we should reinstate an assault weapons ban, and I will carefully review any proposal to do that," Franken said. "We need to make sure we don't really have weapons out there that are really designed for the battlefield, and not for hunting."
Add to these statements the fact that Sen. Mark Begich of Alaska, another Democrat up for re-election in 2014, already said he would not support reauthorizing the assault weapons ban and the precarious position for Obama in the Senate becomes clear.
Copyright 2014 USATODAY.com
Read the original story: Senate Dems on '14 ballot not wowed by Obama gun plans