Biden to oversee White House effort to reduce gun violence

December 19, 2012

President Obama will formally name Vice President Biden on Wednesday as the head of the administration's working group assigned to come up with ways to reduce gun violence following the Newtown, Conn., shootings.

The White House said Obama will make the announcement late Wednesday morning. Biden, a gun-control advocate during his years in the Senate, will supervise what the administration described as an "inter-agency" process to draw up a comprehensive strategy to address gun violence and the mass shootings that have battered a handful of communities during Obama's tenure.

Obama spoke Monday to Biden and several key Cabinet members, including Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr., Education Secretary Arne Duncan, and Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, about the process.

White House officials say the eventual package of proposals will likely include some new restrictions on guns, particularly assault rifles, and high-capacity magazines. But they say it will also likely involve measures that touch on mental health initiatives and, perhaps, a discussion on the depiction of violence presented in popular culture.

A White House aide said Obama is not expected to propose any new policies when he announces Biden's role. But he will outline the process the administration will undertake to develop some. Biden will join him for the announcement in the White House briefing room.

Scott Wilson is the chief White House correspondent for the Washington Post. Previously, he was the paper’s deputy Assistant Managing Editor/Foreign News after serving as a correspondent in Latin America and in the Middle East.
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