Roanoke Mayor David Bowers is putting his support behind banning assault weapons despite being asked to reconsider.
Bowers' signature is next to around 850 other mayors nationwide on a letter sent to Congress in February asking for an assault weapons ban.
The decision is being criticized by the Virginia GOP which calls the ban unconstitutional and is asking the democratic mayor to change his position.
Bowers said he still supports the second amendment, but feels now is the right time for the ban.
"I just don't think these proposals are unreasonable. I think that's what really made the decision for me," he said. "I know others do and those who are strong gun advocates think that they are unreasonable. I find them to be practical."
Bowers said he began changing his mind on the issue after the Newtown, Connecticut tragedy.
The Roanoke mayor said he also supports more background checks and the elimination of armor piercing ammunition.