Obama set January deadline for gun proposals

By JULIE PACE Published: December 19, 2012
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Obama said Wednesday it was “encouraging” to see people of different backgrounds and political affiliations coming to an understanding that the country has an obligation to prevent such violence.

Appealing to gun owners, Obama said he believes in the Second Amendment and the country's strong tradition of gun ownership. And he said “the vast majority of gun owners in America are responsible.”

The president tasked Vice President Joe Biden with leading the administration-wide effort to create new gun control policies. Obama also wants his team to consider ways to improve mental health resources and address ways to create a culture that doesn't promote violence.

The departments of Justice, Education, Health and Human Services, and Homeland Security will all be part of the process.

Biden's prominent role in the process could be an asset for the White House in getting gun legislation through Congress. The vice president spent decades in the Senate and has been called on by Obama before to use his long-standing relationships with lawmakers to build support for White House measures.