An Oregon sheriff wrote Vice President Joe Biden announcing his refusal to enforce any new gun safety legislation placing restriction on semi-automatic weaponry, saying they would "infringe upon the liberties of responsible citizens who have broken no laws."
According to KOIN-TV
, Linn County Sheriff Tim Mueller said he is unsure Biden will actually read the letter, in which he accuses lawmakers of "attempting to exploit the deaths of innocent victims by advocating for laws that would prevent honest, law abiding Americans from possessing certain firearms and ammunition magazines."
Biden has spent most of the past month researching possible gun laws, in the wake of the Dec. 14 mass shooting at a Connecticut elementary school. President Barack Obama is expected to announce new legislation based on Biden's recommendations on Wednesday.
"It just opens the conversation," Mueller said of the letter. "I think people need to be active participants in the conversation, let their elected representatives know where they stand. And whether that's left or right of this, or somewhere in the middle."
Mueller told the station he would prefer the government focus on more stringent regulation of existing laws and increased attention to mental health.
"You can ban every firearm out there, it is not gonna fix it," he said. "People that are gonna commit these kinds of heinous acts, they're gonna find a way to do it."
Watch Mueller explain his written protest in this report, aired Jan. 15, 2013, below.