By Tony Romeo

HARRISBURG, Pa. (CBS) — Acknowledging that they have an uphill battle, several Democratic members of the Pennsylvania House today introduced a package of gun safety bills, including a measure to ban assault weapons.

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State Rep. Dan Frankel, of Allegheny County, said he’s encouraged by conversations he’s had with other lawmakers about their willingness to consider gun measures, including a ban on semi-automatic weapons that mimic fully automatic guns.

But, he says, “I will tell you (an) assault weapons ban is probably a heavy lift here.”

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Meanwhile, state representative Ronald Waters of Philadelphia (at lectern in photo) insists that he and his colleagues do not want to end gun ownership.  Waters says he understands that in a rural area a homeowner may not have time to wait for police to arrive to deal with an intruder.

“They don’t need to call 9-1-1,” Waters said today. “They need to get their hands on 3-5-7 (caliber) — we understand that.”

But one of the measures in the package of gun bills would roll back a recently enacted “stand your ground” law expanding the criteria for using deadly force when a person feels threatened.

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