Tom Bradley

Gavin Newsom sets his sights on a well-armed foe: the gun lobby

Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom never has feared charging into a blazing barrage of bullets.

While taking on enemy fire, he attracts grateful allies. Many people initially question his wisdom but eventually wind up admiring the boldness.

Newsom is attacking again, this time challenging one of America's most dreaded political machines: the gun lobby.

"Risky? Sure it is," he told me. "These guys are exceptionally gifted at intimidation and bullying and are adept grass-roots organizers.

"But their home court is legislative chambers across the country. I think they're very vulnerable in public. They can intimidate the politicians, but I don't think they can...