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By Samuel Burke, CNN
The NRA might run the risk of being obsolete, according to Eliot Spitzer.
The former New York governor says America's most powerful gun lobby has two choices: Either it can "revert to their normal posture ... and refuse to compromise," Spitzer told CNN's Christiane Amanpour in an interview Monday. Or, he believes, the NRA can pivot: remain strong gun advocates, but encourage their membership in to help limit certain gun rights.
If they do not, Spitzer believes the organization runs the risk of becoming politically irrelevant and their membership might drift away.
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As attorney general of New York State, Spitzer dealt with the NRA and sued the companies. But he believes the NRA members are less ideological than the organization's leadership.
"There is common ground there if you can break through the rabid leadership that was playing to its fringe," Spitzer said.
He believes compromise could be found in limiting the number of rounds American citizens can buy.
"There’s no way limiting magazine sales so that you have ten bullets and not thirty is going to be struck down by the Supreme Court. It isn’t going to happen," he said. "Those are nine real people as well. They understand something’s got to be done."
Following the massacre at Sandy Hook elementary, Spitzer campaigned for public pressure on corporations to divest from gun companies. One prestigious investment firm already caved.
President Obama on Wednesday said he will offer recommendations no later than January for preventing another gun tragedy like the massacre in Connecticut.
But Spitzer said leadership from the American president isn't enough.
"I’ve always believed it’s bottom-up. The grassroot activism is what leads - the major transformational movements in our country, the labor movement, the peace movement, the women’s rights movement and the war movement in Vietnam all began bottom-up."
Spitzer predicted that at the State of the Union, President Obama will make gun violence a centerpiece of his annual speech. "He will get everybody in that chamber standing up. It will be emotional; and by June of this year, there will be fundamental laws passed."
CNN’s Ken Olshansky produced this piece for television.