by ABC6 Chief Political Reporter Mark Curtis
As Rhode Island school kids ran to their busses after touring the State House, lawmakers were busy inside talking about how to protect the public after last weeks school massacre in Connecticut.
One of the weapons used there, was a Bushmaster .223 rifle which can be legally sold in Rhode Island, with a 30 bullet clip.
Some in Congress want them banned.
"They have the advantage for a madman, for being able to extend the indiscriminate slaughter of the innocents, and I don't think that's a very strong countervailing value," said Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, (D-RI).
Others want even tougher screening of gun sales.
"To be sure that the system identifies people that are mentally ill, who are disqualified from possessing a firearm, making sure they can't buy one," said Rep. David Cicilline, (D-RI).
Handguns legally available in Rhode Island are the exact models found on the gunman in Connecticut on Friday.
ABC 6 Reporter Mark Curtis said, "I spoke to a couple of gun store owners who did not want to appear on camera, but there concern is this – that in the emotional backlash after a very tragic incident that lawmakers might pass regulations on gun owners, who just have the weapons to protect themselves."
But Congressman Jim Langevin says while assault weapons should be banned, others should not.
"No one is talking about taking away lawful weapons from people for hunting or home protection. I respect the second amendment," Langevin said.
Despite those assurances gun owners are worried.
In fact Proline Firearms in Warwick sold 18 rifles over the weekend, to people who fear a ban may be coming.