With a consensus emerging on universal background checks and the so-called "gun show loophole" — and not much expected from a sit-down with gun-rights advocates — a task force headed by Vice President Joe Biden will issue its recommendations on curbing gun violence next Tuesday. Biden told reporters about the task force's timeline before his scheduled meetings with the National Rifle Association and other groups who represent gun owners. Those meetings began at 1:45 and were closed to press.
The timing may have been a signal that while Biden doesn't intend to ignore those groups' input (which seems to be predicated on ignoring what Biden & Co. have to say), the Vice President remains committed to the commission's push for urgency in getting its proposals before Congress. Next week's announcement will follow, by one day, the one-month anniversary of the school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut.
The pool report from Biden's announcement details what the task force is currently studying:
[Biden] mentioned several recommendations to deal with guns that he said he had heard repeatedly from stakeholders. This included what he called "universal background checks, not just closing the gun show loophole." He also mentioned a call do deal with high capacity magazines. And he said, "The last area is the whole subject of the ability of any federal agency to do research on gun violence."
Biden added that he was hoping to meet soon with gun manufacturers and, later, with Congress, which would need to get involved on the so-called loophole, despite the objections of conservatives who took issue with Biden's comments Wednesday that he would encourage President Obama to take "executive orders" on some proposals.
"There has got to be some common ground, to not solve every problem but diminish the probability [of shootings]," Biden said Thursday ahead of his next round of meetings. "That's what this is all about. There are no conclusions I have reached."
Update: Here are the groups Biden plans to meet with today, via the pool report:
From a White House Official:
11:45 AM: Sportsmen and Women and Wildlife Interest Groups:
- Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies
- BlueWater Strategies
- Bull Moose Sportsmen's Alliance Action Fund
- Ducks Unlimited
- Outdoor Industry Association
- Pheasants Forever
- Teddy Roosevelt Conservation Partnership
- Wildlife Management Institute
1:45 PM: Gun Owners’ Groups:
- Defense Small Arms Advisory Council (DSAAC.)
- Firearms Import/Export Roundtable
- Independent Firearm Owners Association (IFoA)
- National Rifle Association of America
- National Shooting Sports Foundation
- National Association of Arms Shows
6:00 PM: Representatives from the Entertainment Industry:
- Branded Entertainment
- Comcast Corporation
- Directors Guild of America
Film & Television AllianceIndependent Film & Television Alliance
- Motion Picture Association of America
- National Association of Broadcasters
- National Association of Theatre Owners
- National Cable and Telecommunications Association
Supplied by the Justice Department:
Today, at 3:15 the Attorney General will meet with retailers as part of the ongoing gun violence sessions being held at the White House by Vice President Biden.
Below is a list of the retailers who will be attendance.
- Academy Sports + Outdoors
- Bass Pro Shops
- Big 5 Sporting Goods
- Dick's Sporting Goods
- Dunham's Sports
- Gander Mountain
- Sportsman's Warehouse
- National Retail Federation – (awaiting confirmation)
Update: Reactions so far:
Perhaps we should require mental health exams of those demanding that law-abiding Americans be punished for the actions of criminals.— Dana Loesch (@DLoesch) January 10, 2013
Yes, the gun control issue is clearly a distraction from the actions of Obama's Left hand. Vigilance is required for both the Left & Right.— Adam Baldwin (@adamsbaldwin) January 10, 2013
Note that VP Biden met separately today with sportsmen and nra.public often conflates the interests of the two but they are not lock-step— Michael Smerconish (@smerconish) January 10, 2013