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Ballmer Joins Billionaires Pushing Washington Gun Control

Fundraising for a gun-control campaign in Washington state is outpacing opponents by a ratio of 4-to-1, fueled by contributions from former Microsoft Corp. executives Bill Gates, Steve Ballmer and Jon Shirley.

They and other supporters have given about $3.4 million to the effort to impose criminal background checks on those who buy firearms online or at gun shows. A competing gun-rights initiative has garnered about $1.1 million to require buyer background checks only when the seller is a firearms dealer, the current federal standard.