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President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden meet with senior advisors in the Oval Office to discuss the shootings in Aurora, Colorado, July 20, 2012. Pictured, from left, are: Kathryn Ruemmler, Counsel to the President, and FBI Director Robert Mue
At 11:45 AM ET on Wednesday, President Barack Obama will announce the selection of Vice President Joe Biden to lead his administration's effort to develop a comprehensive policy for preventing mass shootings such as last Friday's massacre in Newtown, Connecticut.

Although the president won't announce his support for specific policy proposals, The New York Times' Peter Baker reports that aides have said he is interested in ideas such as banning assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition clips. He is also interested in examining proposals for strengthening the ability of the mental health and education systems to prevent mass violence.

Politico's Reid Epstein reports the president will emphasize the process for developing a proposal, a process that began in earnest yesterday with the president's involvement.

According to a White House official, the president likely won’t make significant policy announcements but will instead explain how his administration will determine what to do next.

Obama spoke Monday with Biden and three Cabinet secretaries – Attorney General Eric Holder, Education Secretary Arne Duncan and Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius — “to begin looking at ways the country can respond to the tragedy in Newtown,” the White House said.

The president also spoke yesterday with West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin, a pro-gun Democrat who has come out in favor of new gun restrictions in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook shooting.
The White House said Tuesday that Mr. Obama spoke by phone with one staunch gun-rights supporter, Sen. Joe Manchin (D., W.Va.), who said that he and Mr. Obama "agree that as Americans and parents, all of our children belong to all of us—and we must work together to keep our precious children safe."

Mr. Manchin said he knows "my friends at the NRA [National Rifle Association] and those who support our Second Amendment rights will participate because I know that their hearts are aching for the families in Newtown, just like all Americans."

Biden was chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee when the 1994 assault weapons ban was passed by Congress and signed into law by President Bill Clinton.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 06:30 AM PST.

Also republished by Repeal or Amend the Second Amendment (RASA).

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Comment Preferences

  •  Repubs are going the mental health route (10+ / 0-)

    to decrease gun violence - after CUTTING millions from mental health community centers last year.

    "Tax cuts for the 1% create jobs." -- Republicans, HAHAHA - in China

    by MartyM on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 06:33:57 AM PST

    •  Of course they are. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Under no circumstances will any of this be blamed on the easy access and gross availability of guns in this country.

      Not ever.

      Got to keep the gun manufacturers rolling in green!

      Gotta keep that profit margin nice and high.


      "If it were up to me, I'd take away the guns."--Cheryl Wheeler

      by lyvwyr101 on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 06:52:09 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  The gun nut wing of thier party believes (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      lcbo, MartyM

      that the only solution to gun violence is more guns.

      Thankfully, I think a lot of the so called "fiscally conservative/socially liberal" Republicans are going to be for some gun control.

      In political terms, this is another stress test for the GOP. If they refuse to do nothing to appease the gun nuts, they are going to lose even more voters going forward.

    •  Don't label increased access to mental health care (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DSPS owl a "Republican talking point."  Nothing wrong with a multi-pronged approach here, and if the ACA provided free mental health care to all as preventative care, it might make it more popular.

      And from what I have seen, the Republican angle on this is attacking violence in video games.  And not enough Jesus in the classroom.

      Are you a Green who has difficulty telling Democrats and Republicans apart? Well, I have difficulty telling Greens and Maoists apart.

      by Subversive on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 07:01:59 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  That'll teach him to flat guarantee... (8+ / 0-)

    ...that Social Security won't be touched.

    Exile him to head a committee.

  •  A Guarantee that Nothing Will Be Done (7+ / 0-)

    The president is outsourcing his promises so he can get back to business as usual, it seems.

    I wonder how much the task force will have done by the time the next mass murder occurs (because it will occur, since nothing will be done).

    The old Cherokee simply replied, "The one you feed."

    by teacherjon on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 06:40:19 AM PST

  •  Yawn. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lyvwyr101, splashoil, hester, MixedContent

    Let's put Joe in charge and study it and cry and make speeches. And be sure to cave in to Rs along the way.

    At least he got the Time cover.

  •  Wish he'd do gun control himself and let Biden (7+ / 0-)

    deal with the fiscal wheel-chair ramp.

    Obama does better for the country when he's empathizing than when he's capitulating.

    "There were questions that Governor Romney wanted to address to make sure people understood that he's not a felon" - Ed Gillespie (Romney supporter)

    by itswhatson on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 06:42:55 AM PST

  •  Let hope a ban of Assault Weapon passes next (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lyvwyr101, All Outta Bubble Gum


    "Rick Perry talks a lot and he's not very bright. And that's a combination I like in Republicans." --- James Carville

    by LaurenMonica on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 06:45:17 AM PST

  •  Biden's dilemma (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Gentle Giant, lyvwyr101

    If he forces through an unpopular version of gun control, his (not that improbable) Presidential aspirations are doomed.
    If he can't force through any gun control bill in this climate, his Presidential aspirations are doomed.
    If he can forge a popular gun control bill, then the NRA will be (forgive the term) gunning for him.

  •  This is the way Obama's mind works: he studies (4+ / 0-)

    things and he thinks things through. It may not make everyone here happy, but that's the President we elected. Twice.

    I, for one, will give this a chance.

    Yes, we need to talk about this. Please sign the dKos Petition to start a national conversation about gun control.

    by GreenMtnState on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 06:49:43 AM PST

  •  Biden w/b excellent at this. He's Mr. Government (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Gentle Giant

    it's nice to have some government experience brought to bear on this.

    80 % of Success is Just Showing Up !

    by Churchill on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 06:51:02 AM PST

    •  I don't see this as Obama passing the buck or (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DSPS owl

      not caring, either.
      Delegating authority is not weak leadership, especially when delegated intelligently to someone perhaps better suited to the task.
      Biden is not an accessory to Obama. He's a force in his own right.

      I believe in democracy, civil liberties, and the rule of law. That makes me a liberal, and I’m proud of it. - Paul Krugman

      by Gentle Giant on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 06:55:08 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Agreed! If you're gonna delegate, then delegate to (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cjfb, Gentle Giant

        someone with brains, experience, & heart. That sums up Joe Biden IMO. m/

        A village can not reorganize village life to suit the village idiot.

        by METAL TREK on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 07:26:05 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  I agree. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Gentle Giant

        In this instance I think delegating to Biden is the best decision.

        Let's face it - the gun nuts and recalcitrant Republicans hate the mere sight of the president and what he represents.

        If his face is out of this equation I think there's a better chance for progress since they can't tie any proposals specifically to the president.

        I have little doubt that he will keep very close tabs on the issue behind the scenes.

        The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy... the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness.

        by lcbo on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 08:17:36 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Now if only Obama would tap a real (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    raboof, Subversive, expatjourno

    Democrat to lead the "fiscal cliff" negotiations!

  •  I hope this doesn't go the way of Biden's (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TJ, splashoil

    Middle Class Task Force. Sorry to be so cynical but we haven't heard anything about that since right after the first election

    "I'm sculpting now. Landscapes mostly." ~ Yogi Bear

    by eXtina on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 06:56:37 AM PST

  •  Newton Window greases Catfood Agenda (4+ / 1-)
    Recommended by:
    stewarjt, teacherjon, DSPS owl, expatjourno
    Hidden by:

    Like a Friday news dump, all Newton all the time provides excellent cover to roll out the great betrayal.  Please take the time to call out the pre-emptive capitulation aka Social Security and Medicare cuts for chump change "new revenue."

    Pelosi supports Obama Betrayal

    •  WH Call #12024561111 swamped? (0+ / 0-)

      Constant busy signal suggests an intentional choke on new input.  Try it!

      •  Still Busy At The White House (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        I called Leader Pelosi and was immediate switched to a message line to leave comments.  No one answering the phone will explain her reasons for supporting Social Security cuts nor will they direct me to an on line explanation for supporting them.

        If I was a communist, rich men would fear me...And the opposite applies. The history of all hitherto existing society is the history of class struggles.

        by stewarjt on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 07:16:48 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  HR for Firebagging, lying, denigrating a tragedy (0+ / 1-)
      Recommended by:
      Hidden by:

      You should seriously be ashamed of yourself for what you wrote.

      When we were ahead, people at DailyKos said to fight like we were behind. When we were behind, people at DailyKos said to give up.

      by NoFortunateSon on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 07:14:30 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Uprated to counter NoFortunateSon's ratings abuse. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      quill, MixedContent

      So tired of the ardent supporters suppressing criticism of Obama. Time for another clean-up.

      •  A clean up? (0+ / 0-)

        Oh, you're such a toughie, purging the site of all those who don't share your views. There's a reason you HR the portmanteau of firebagger. It's because the teabagger portion rings so true. Keep up the work, though!

        When we were ahead, people at DailyKos said to fight like we were behind. When we were behind, people at DailyKos said to give up.

        by NoFortunateSon on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 09:15:22 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Obama is proud! (0+ / 0-)

          Of his "Offer" to Boehner

          The President apparently feels guilty over weaponizing the debt limit in 2011, but if he were truly guilty, he would draw the line in the sand today rather than two years from now. The debt limit is virtually the only piece of leverage Republicans have in an agreement. On all other parts of this, they have either caved before or will cave later. The President says he won’t negotiate on the debt limit. By offering up this debt deal now, he’s actually in the process of doing that. And he’s basically setting up a debt default in 2014, or a major conflagration anyway, by not shutting this down immediately.

          So I think this all counts as news regardless of what press conference it emerged from.

          Just stick to the facts and forget your petty name calling.  You have nothing.  
          •  Liar Blog Fake (0+ / 0-)

            Also, pretty dumb too.

            The Republicans have plenty of leverage in this debate.

            They have virtually nothing to lose, and can thwart any second term agenda.

            Perhaps it is now dawning on you why Obama was willing to offer chained CPI, and Leader Pelosi told you to STFU.

            When we were ahead, people at DailyKos said to fight like we were behind. When we were behind, people at DailyKos said to give up.

            by NoFortunateSon on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:30:24 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Pierce (0+ / 0-)

              Grand Sellout Emerges:

              So here's where we sit. The Democrats, led by the president, who never is going to need to depend on Social Security, are prepared to concede on an issue that has absolutely nothing to do with the deficit. They are going to make life harder for millions of seniors. Social Security is now squarely "on the table" in any future budget negotiation. (Hey, who unplugged the third rail?) The simplest solution — raising the cap — is beyond discussion, now and forever. The "chained-CPI," which is a terrible idea on its own merits, as well as a piece of noxious moral sleight-of-hand, seeing as how it cuts benefits while pretending not to do so, is being adopted whole hog without a corresponding mechanism to raise more Social Security revenue to make up for the loss. If the president maintains his faith in the great god SimpsonBowles, the old folks will get a bump for only two years after the deal takes effect. Swell.
              Warning contains adult content and a very unpleasant image of David Gregory...
              •  Charles Pierce, who I love, doesn't have to either (0+ / 0-)

                Unfortunately, it is speaker Boehner, not Speaker Pelosi, an illegitimate speaker representing 1 million fewer people in this country. Yet he is speaker nonetheless.

                So you're Obama, and you say to Speaker Boehner: I want extension of the payroll tax break, I want umpteen billion in stimulus measures, I want tax rates for those making over $250k to rise, Medicare and Medicad are off the table, and so is the social security age and discretionary spending cuts.

                Now you're John Boehner. How do you respond?

                When we were ahead, people at DailyKos said to fight like we were behind. When we were behind, people at DailyKos said to give up.

                by NoFortunateSon on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 12:16:26 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Bill Black: The Big Picture (0+ / 0-)

                  Let's Celebrate the Failure of 7/12 GB:

                  It is revealing that no one in the media even attempts anymore to defend the bipartisan fiscal cliff (austerity) deal. The media normally have a romantic crush on anything bipartisan, no matter how much it harms the nation. The fiscal cliff austerity deal is so obviously stupid that even the media almost universally criticize it. This should prompt three obvious questions.

                      1. What idiot designed the fiscal cliff (austerity) deal?
                      2. Why did both parties support it?
                      3. Why did the media not denounce the deal before it was adopted?

                  The answers are:

                      1. President Obama took the lead in crafting the “fiscal cliff.” He did so with terrible counsel provided by Treasury Secretary Geithner and William Daley, Obama’s chief of staff (Wall Street’s leading representative within the administration and, like Geithner, a strong opponent of stimulus and a strong proponent of austerity).
                      2. Both parties “knew” that austerity was essential.
                      3. The media “knew” that austerity was essential.

                  This is it in a nutshell.  PO has led us along the path to austerity where he wants to shove us.  It's not pretty.  When I think that I actually phone banked and gave money to support this shill, I'm glad WA has legalized pot!
                  •  Naked Capitalism: Like a suicide hotline, but... (0+ / 0-)

                    ...but without all the good cheer.

                    Let's forget the puerile "this is what President Obama wants" nonsense. You, and Naked Capitalism, certainly don't know what Obama wants.

                    What Obama want(ed) was to be re-elected. What Obama wants now if for a Democrat to succeed him as President to cement his legacy.

                    The best way to do that is through GDP growth.

                    But you still haven't answered my question: if you are Obama, dealing with Boehner, what do you do? How do you get all you want passed?

                    When we were ahead, people at DailyKos said to fight like we were behind. When we were behind, people at DailyKos said to give up.

                    by NoFortunateSon on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 09:26:50 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

  •  Maybe (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    expatjourno, MixedContent

    President Obama should tap VP Biden to handle the fiscal curb negotiations?  He couldn't do any worse.

    If I was a communist, rich men would fear me...And the opposite applies. The history of all hitherto existing society is the history of class struggles.

    by stewarjt on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 06:59:59 AM PST

  •  I've written about this before (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    here about how my husband who committed suicide couldn't get help through our insurance company. We not only need better gun regs but insurance companies need to be forced to pay for treatment of people who are mentally ill.They DO NOT WANT TO PAY. Thats why they push drugs.

    from the below "3) Health Insurance Companies: Man up. My main complaint is with you. You make it so hard to keep people in the hospital when they need to be there, and it’s even harder to keep them in intensive outpatient services. Please create protocols for difficult cases and loosen the purse strings for extremely troubled individuals –- before it’s too late."

  •  I'd rather see Biden warring on assault weapons (0+ / 0-)

    ...than on drugs.

    Are you a Green who has difficulty telling Democrats and Republicans apart? Well, I have difficulty telling Greens and Maoists apart.

    by Subversive on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 07:03:53 AM PST

  •  . (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    teacherjon, expatjourno, ursoklevar
    - Charlotte Bacon, 2/22/06, female
    - Daniel Barden, 9/25/05, male
    - Rachel Davino, 7/17/83, female.
    - Olivia Engel, 7/18/06, female
    - Josephine Gay, 12/11/05, female
    - Ana M. Marquez-Greene, 04/04/06, female
    - Dylan Hockley, 3/8/06, male
    - Dawn Hochsprung, 06/28/65, female
    - Madeleine F. Hsu, 7/10/06, female
    - Catherine V. Hubbard, 6/08/06, female
    - Chase Kowalski, 10/31/05, male
    - Jesse Lewis, 6/30/06, male
    - James Mattioli , 3/22/06, male
    - Grace McDonnell, 12/04/05, female
    - Anne Marie Murphy, 07/25/60, female
    - Emilie Parker, 5/12/06, female
    - Jack Pinto, 5/06/06, male
    - Noah Pozner, 11/20/06, male
    - Caroline Previdi, 9/07/06, female
    - Jessica Rekos, 5/10/06, female
    - Avielle Richman, 10/17/06, female
    - Lauren Rousseau, 6/1982, female (full date of birth not specified)
    - Mary Sherlach, 2/11/56, female
    - Victoria Soto, 11/04/85, female
    - Benjamin Wheeler, 9/12/06, male
    - Allison N. Wyatt, 7/03/06, female

    "Say little, do much" (Pirkei Avot 1:15)

    by hester on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 07:07:42 AM PST

  •  Wow (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    splashoil, expatjourno

    The PRESIDENT chose someone to project the leadership and hard choices he won't verbally commit to? Seems to me he really doesn't give a tinkers damn about gun violence, or more likely he must be getting paid real good given that he IS president, CANT be "held accountable" in a future election and HAS hurricane force political wind at his back(again) to do the right thing.

    I won't understand why he will choose to stand by and "let republicans" destroy whats left of the present and future assistance programs for the vast majority of us who willingly(or are compelled) to pay our taxes through payroll check(if we are lucky enough to be working), but I won't be shocked. This presidents ACTIONS speak louder than his words. If he has done anything important so far, its because others have done the heavy lifting and sacrificing, and he has silently stood by when his bold proposals get carved into a shit sandwich. Maybe in 4 years we can have a leader who leads and has Actual Actionable Convictions.

  •  Objects influence actions, AR guns are different (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Anybody knows a thing influences your actions. That idea is part of english grammar, a hammer hammers, a teacher teaches and so on. An AR weapon is not just a gun, it is an offensive weapon, a shredding weapon that can fire 45 rounds a minute. What you do with it is not exactly the same thing you want to do with a handgun or a rifle. Its not just what somebody can do with it, its what it makes someone want to do with it that causes it to be unacceptably dangerous.

  •   Founder that own Bushmaster brand (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Father live in town where shooting  occurred ,how ironic    go to yahoo and seach "Cerbeus Newtown CT Ties"

  •  Assault Weapons: Red Herring (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    expatjourno, quill

    In the rush to do SOMETHING we seem to be planning on resurrecting the previous federal assault weapon and high cap magazine bad: bad idea.  That measure failed utterly yet seemed to give most people the warm fuzzies that we had made a significant step towards solving the gun violence problem.

    The definition of "assault weapons" concerned mainly on the levels of military styling.  Focusing on form over function is usually the sign of a flawed process and so it was in this case.  You could still easily buy AR-15s during the ban; they merely had to leave off the bayonet lug and flash suppressor.  Perhaps these ommissions would have decreased their military value—slightly—but had zero effect on their lethality.  

    Another major flaw was that other equally deadly firearms were entirely unaffected; for instance the Ruger mini-14 would be very effective in the hands of a mad-man and was a weapon used to arm California Highway Patrolmen operating in remote areas where prompt backup response could not be assured.  The Virgina Tech and Giffords shooters utilized semi-automatic handguns with large capacity magazines in their massacres and would have been entirely unaffected by an assault rifle ban.  The key factor is the ability of a shooter to inflict incredible damage in the first moments of the attack and banning a gun simply because it looks scary is a rather naive approach.

    Yet another flaw with the ban is that it did nothing to remove existing guns from circulation.  If we were to completely outlaw the manufacture of semi-automatic, detachable magazine rifles today, they would still be available to whackos for generations.  If we ban a firearm, it needs to be by prohibiting manufacture and outlawing its possession coupled with a fair buy-back program.

    The magazine ban was also a bad joke.  There was a delayed implementation of the law and any magazines manufactured before the start date were allowed to be sold.  The ban was in effect of ten years(?) but you could still online order "preban" magazines at only a slight premium relative to years the ban was in effect.  Again there are already a huge pool of these magazines out there so simply preventing further manufacture or sale will be similarly ineffective in non-geological time scales.  I bought an AR-15 5 years or so before the ban and it came with two magazines that were blocked to hold only 5 shots; probably it was a fig-leaf to the manufacturer's sensibilities.  (It was trivial to open them up and remove the block.)

    The net result of the whole thing was to encourage people to buy slightly altered military-style rifles and high-capacity magazine—while they "still had the chance"—while giving the GOP a way to rally parts of their base against gun-grabbing BIG-GOVERNMENT.  There was absolutely no useful decrease in the potential for gun violence.

    Let's not get duped again this time around.  Let's outlaw detachable magazines with a capacity > 10 (or maybe 10 for pistols and 5 for rifles) and 8 for non-detachable highpower (i.e. other than 22 rimfire) magazines.  A 12-month grace period with a fair-priced buyback for outlawed magazines and firearms followed by severe penalties for possession (which would include a lifetime ban on the all firearm ownership/possession).  If this measure isn't enough then we can tighten things up; however, lets start with something that has at least a chance to make things better rather than something as porous as our tax laws.

    My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right.—Carl Schurz
    Give 'em hell, Barry—Me

    by KingBolete on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 07:24:26 AM PST

  •  This president always lets others lead. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Although the president won't announce his support for specific policy proposals...
    No, of course not. Because that would be leadership, the one thing that this president will never provide.
  •  Winning the debate (0+ / 0-)

    When the country was all gung-ho for war in the run up to the invasion of Iraq, Barack Obama showed how one could oppose the war without being painted as a dirty hippie. He stated that he wasn't against all wars, but he was against dumb wars.

    The same approach needs to be taken on the issue of gun ownership. A politician can say that they support Second Amendment rights, but that they are against dumb gun laws. They can say that they are not for widespread gun control, but they are for common sense gun laws. They can say that they support the right of gun ownership, but point out that there is a responsibility that comes with gun ownership.

  •  No one I trust more than Biden on this (0+ / 0-)

    he's on our side, knows how Congress works and knows how to get stuff like this done- fantastic

    The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power. --George Orwell

    by jgkojak on Wed Dec 19, 2012 at 09:50:56 AM PST

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