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David Sherfinski

David Sherfinski

David Sherfinski covers politics for The Washington Times. He can be reached at

Articles by David Sherfinski

EPA will not appeal Virginia stormwater ruling

The Environmental Protection Agency will not appeal a January ruling that handed Virginia Attorney General Kenneth T. Cuccinelli II a courtroom victory over a federal agency he has tangled with more than once with since being elected to office in 2009. Published March 4, 2013

Sen. Patrick J. Leahy (shown) and D.C. Council member David A. Catania are spearheading efforts in their respective legislative bodies to protect the privacy of personal email accounts. (Associated Press)

Patrick Leahy, Susan Collins roll out bipartisan gun trafficking bill

Sen. Patrick J. Leahy, Vermont Democrat and Sen. Susan M. Collins, Maine Republican, announced new legislation on the Senate floor Monday that would make gun trafficking a federal crime and crack down on straw purchasing — one of the first bipartisan gun-related measures to be introduced after the Newtown, Conn., shootings in December. Published March 4, 2013

** FILE ** New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and legislative leaders applaud after Cuomo signed New York's Secure Ammunition and Firearms Enforcement Act into law during a ceremony in the Red Room at the Capitol on Jan. 15, 2013, in Albany, N.Y. From left are Senate co-leader Jeffrey Klein, Bronx Democrat, Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, Manhattan Democrat, Lt. Gov. Robert Duffy (behind Cuomo) and Senate Democratic Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, Yonkers Democrat. (Associated Press)

Courts are likely to get last word on gun control

With congressional action on gun control largely stuck in a holding pattern on Capitol Hill, the real battlefields on the issue may become local, state and federal courtrooms. Published March 3, 2013

Neil Heslin, the father of a six-year-old boy who was slain in the Sandy Hook massacre in Newtown, Conn., on Dec. 14, holds a picture of himself with his son and wipes his eye while testifying on Capitol Hill on Feb. 27, 2013, before the Senate Judiciary Committee on the Assault Weapons Ban of 2013. (Associated Press)

Both sides stand ground in gun-control battle as Newtown dad begs for action

A father who lost his son in the Newtown shootings pleaded with senators to act on gun control at a Wednesday hearing and Vice President Joseph R. Biden proclaimed that the political dynamics of the issue have irrevocably changed — but opponents of President Obama's proposals showed no signs of budging and a key lawmaker said universal background checks are unlikely to pass Congress. Published February 27, 2013

**FILE** Gun dealer Mel Bernstein fires his AK-47 assault rifle on full automatic at his own Dragonman's shooting range and gun store, east of Colorado Springs, Colo., on Feb. 5, 2013. (Associated Press)

Officials warn sequester could hinder gun control

All sides say they want better enforcement of current gun laws, but law enforcement officials are warning the budget cuts looming at the end of this week would be a major setback to those efforts — and could end up putting more guns in the hands of criminals. Published February 25, 2013

In this photo taken Aug. 13, 2009, Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley looks at a handgun during a gun turn-in program in Chicago, as Chicago Police Superintendent Jody Weis looks on in the background. Daley, one of the nation's most vocal gun control advocates, said the city will not roll over if the Supreme Court rules against the city's gun ban. (AP Photo/Chicago Sun-Times, Rich Hein)

Court again slaps down Ill. handgun ban

A federal court on Friday delivered a major victory to gun rights supporters, denying a petition to rehear a December ruling that declared an Illinois law prohibiting people from carrying concealed handguns in public unconstitutional. Published February 22, 2013

Vice President Joseph R. Biden speaks at a gun violence conference in Danbury, Conn., on Feb. 21, 2013. The conference, held near the Newtown where 26 lives were lost in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, was organized by members of the state's congressional delegation is to push President Obama's gun control proposals. (Associated Press)

Biden: 'There's a moral price to be paid for inaction' on guns

Speaking at a university in Connecticut mere miles from where the December Newtown school shootings took place, Vice President Joseph R. Biden urged legislators across the country Thursday to move on gun control, warning that "there's a moral price to be paid for inaction." Published February 21, 2013

** FILE ** Vladimir Putin stalks the Tuva region of Siberia in this photo from August 2007. (Associated Press)

Russia targets Americans amid Obama's gun-control battle

President Obama helped spur a run on firearms and ammunition by people looking to stock up before proposed gun controls take effect — and the impact is being felt even in unlikely places. Like Russia. Published February 21, 2013

associated press

Biden suggests shotgun, not AR-15, for self-defense

Vice President Joseph R. Biden encouraged people who want to defend themselves to buy a shotgun Tuesday and dismissed outright the comparison between a ban on illegal drugs and a ban on guns -- rhetorically positing the idea of legalizing cocaine to make his point. Published February 19, 2013

** FILE ** Vice President Joseph R. Biden speaks Jan. 25, 2013, during a roundtable discussion on gun violence at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Va. (Associated Press)

Biden suggests shotgun, not AR-15, for self-defense

Vice President Joseph R. Biden encouraged people who want to defend themselves to buy a shotgun Tuesday and dismissed outright the comparison between a ban on illegal drugs and a ban on guns — rhetorically positing the idea of legalizing cocaine to make his point. Published February 19, 2013

** FILE ** Wayne LaPierre, executive vice president and CEO of the National Rifle Association, speaks during a news conference in Washington on Friday, Dec. 21, 2012, in response to the Newtown, Conn., school shooting the week before. The NRA, the nation's largest gun-rights lobby, is calling for armed police officers to be posted in every American school to stop the next killer "waiting in the wings." (Associated Press)

NRA says no way its members back limits on guns

Gun-control and gun-rights advocates are locked in a fierce dispute over what rank-and-file National Rifle Association members and average gun owners think about President Obama's gun-control proposals, with the NRA sharply rebutting numbers purporting to show that its members and gun owners are largely receptive to new laws. Published February 18, 2013

Background checks part of gun-control talks

Key Senators from both parties said Sunday that background checks on virtually all gun sales can win bipartisan support in the Senate, signaling progress on one of the key provisions of President Obama's gun control package. Published February 17, 2013

Sequestration becomes partisan game of political chicken on the Hill

Top congressional Republicans on Sunday predicted that deep, across-the-board spending cuts will take effect March 1, dismissing a Democratic proposal to avert them as dead on arrival and setting the stage for a high-stakes political game of chicken — just as Congress' weeklong recess gets under way. Published February 17, 2013

**FILE** Sen. Rand Paul, Kentucky Republican (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

Obama leak of visa plan draws fire

Congressional Republicans on Sunday accused the White House of poisoning the well on immigration reform by leaking a draft proposal while senators from both parties are working toward a compromise on the issue, saying the move shows President Obama is more concerned with scoring political points than passing legislation. Published February 17, 2013


NRA chief fires back at president

National Rifle Association CEO Wayne LaPierre accused President Obama Thursday of trying to exploit the recent Connecticut school shootings to advance a decades-old gun-control agenda in his first public response to Mr. Obama's State of the Union address. Published February 14, 2013

Hill Democrats lock and load for gun vote

President Obama's rallying cries in his State of the Union address for Congress to vote on his gun-control measures prodded his fellow Democrats on Capitol Hill into fighting mode, with one prominent party member warning House Speaker John A. Boehner on Wednesday not to "hide from the American people" on the issue. Published February 13, 2013

**FILE** National Rifle Association CEO and Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

NRA CEO LaPierre to respond to SOTU Thursday

National Rifle Association vice president and CEO Wayne LaPierre will "directly respond" to President Obama's State of the Union address Thursday afternoon, the group announced Wednesday. Published February 13, 2013

Sen. Richard J. Durbin (Associated Press)

Political split on gun rights evident during Senate hearing

Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee argued Tuesday that a balance exists between enacting new gun laws and protecting the Second Amendment, while Republicans cautioned that any ban on so-called assault weapons treads dangerously on the U.S. Constitution — an ideological divide seared into the current gun debate that hard-liners on both sides are unlikely to cross. Published February 12, 2013