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WASHINGTON (AP) — The mother of a Newtown, Conn., shooting victim is making a deeply personal plea from the White House for all Americans to take action on gun violence.

Francine Wheeler's 6-year-old son, Ben, was killed inside Sandy Hook Elementary School. She's stepping in for President Barack Obama to deliver the president's weekly radio and Internet address. She is the first person to deliver the address other than Obama or Vice President Joe Biden since the two took office in 2009.

Wheeler says thousands of families are drowning in her family's grief and asks for help to do something, in her words, "before our tragedy becomes your tragedy."

In the Republican address, congresswoman Jackie Walorski of Indiana criticizes Obama's budget blueprint as a blank check for more spending and debt.

Published in National News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - When a gunman killed 26 children and staff at a Connecticut grade school, proposals to let teachers carry hidden guns into the classroom soon proliferated in many Republican-led states.

But less than four months later, the quest to put guns in schools has stalled in many traditionally gun-friendly states after encountering opposition from educators, reluctance from some governors and ambivalence from legislative leaders more focused on economic initiatives.

So far, South Dakota is the only state to respond with a new law allowing school personnel to carry guns into elementary and high schools. A similar proposal is poised for passage in Kansas. And Arkansas has enacted a new law allowing colleges to let staff with concealed gun permits bring their weapons on campus.

Published in Local News

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