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on CBSNews.com's "Washington Unplugged" in December, Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli compared the individual mandate to forcing people to buy guns.
"Never before in our history has the federal government ordered Americans to buy a product under the guise of regulating commerce," he said.
"Does this mean now 55 miles an hour speed limit means 65, 80, whatever you choose? The proposal illustrates how the response to the Newtown, Conn., massacre varies widely in different parts of the country.
While lawmakers in generally more liberal states with large urban centers like New York and California have moved to tighten gun control laws, more conservative, rural areas in the American heartland have been going in the opposite direction, seeking to loosen restrictions, arm educators or even require gun ownership.
The lawmakers told the Argus Leader they know the bill won't pass and introduced it only to make a point related to the individual mandate in last year's sweeping health care reform law.
The mandate, which goes into effect in 2014, requires that all Americans purchase health insurance or pay a fine. "But at the same time, we do not believe the federal government can order every citizen to buy health insurance." The individual mandate has been at the center of court challenges to the health care reform law.
-- Lawmakers in about two dozen states have considered making it easier for school employees or volunteers to carry guns on campus. Individual communities from New Jersey to Colorado have voted to allow administrators or teachers to carry guns in school.
Located in the Appalachian foothills, Nelson is a tiny, hilly town with narrow, twisting roads.
Even some who initially supported the measure said it should have recommended gun ownership instead of requiring it, and worried that the proposal had made the community a laughingstock.
"Do I or the other cosponsors believe that the State of South Dakota can require citizens to buy firearms? Two federal judges have thus far ruled the law constitutional and two have ruled it (at least in part) unconstitutional.
The matter is expected to eventually come before the Supreme Court.
The only people exempted would be those legally prohibited from owning a firearm.
If this sounds too crazy to be true, it is - sort of.