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    Dec 20, 2013

    Obama Says He Regrets Gun-Control Legislation Didn't Pass After Newtown Shooting

    He said it was a "mistake" for Congress not to act on legislation tightening background checks for gun sales.

    Reflecting on the frustrations of 2013, President Obama specifically cited Congress's failure to pass gun-reform legislation following the shooting at Sandy Hook elementary school in Newtown, Conn.

    "Not passing background checks in the wake of Newtown is something I continue to believe was a mistake," Obama said during his end-of-the-year news conference at the White House Friday.

    "But then I also look at, because of the debate that occurred, all the work that's been done at state levels to increase gun safety and to make sure we don't see tragedies like that happen again."

    Shortly following the Sandy Hook massacre that killed 20 children and 6 adults, Obama said in an interview with NBC's "Meet the Press" that the Newtown shooting on Dec. 14, 2012 was the worst day of his presidency.

    On April 17, 2013, a bill to expand background checks failed in the U.S. Senate, leading Obama to say it was "a pretty shameful day for Washington."

    This past weekend, to mark the one-year anniversary of the Sandy Hook shooting on Dec. 14, 2013, Obama said that the country hasn't done enough since Newtown:

    "And on this anniversary of a day we will never forget, that's the example we should continue to follow. Because we haven't yet done enough to make our communities and our country safer," the president said in his weekly address. "We have to do more to keep dangerous people from getting their hands on a gun so easily. We have to do more to heal troubled minds. We have to do everything we can to protect our children from harm and make them feel loved, and valued, and cared for."

    Saul Loeb /AFP-Getty

    President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama light 26 candles, honoring the 26 students and teachers killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.

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