Guglielmo named to gun control task force

By Steve Smith - Staff Writer
Region - posted Fri., Jan. 18, 2013

State Sen. Tony Guglielmo (R-35) has been named to the special bipartisan state task force on gun violence and children's safety. "I am honored to be chosen as one of the many members working on this task force.  We are going to have a good, productive conversation and try and do what's right for all the citizens of Connecticut. As a parent and grandparent, I want to do all that I can to ensure the people of the state of Connecticut that I will do my job and do it in a thoughtful and deliberative way," said Guglielmo.

The committee was slated to hold its first meeting on Jan. 18, at which Guglielmo said they would set the “ground rules” of how to proceed, but added that the expectation is that they will move very quickly to send some recommendations to the legislative floor. Guglielmo also said there will be a public participation part of the process.

“If we do it without public hearing, I think that would be a big mistake,” he said. “Public hearings will be lengthy, but we have to do them. If people feel they are shut out of this, they will be upset with us, and rightfully so.”

He said he has received more than 200 e-mails about the Newtown tragedy, and that does not include phone calls and letters. “People really want to weigh in,” he said. “It's very emotional.”

Another thing the senator said he hopes will happen is that the legislators will get an education on the different types of weapons. At a recent public safety meeting, he learned that some of his fellow legislators did not know the difference between semi-automatic and automatic weapons.

“What I found out is... a lot of people really don't know much about the guns – a lot of legislators,” he said. “So, I think that's going to be part of the process. You have to understand the difference, because the last assault rifle ban was all based on cosmetics – what the gun looked like, and not how it functioned.”

Guglielmo declined to give his own stance on gun control, but said his focus will be on solutions that make sense, and added that the task force is expected to present its findings by late February.

“I want us to do something that works,” he said. “I don't want something that feels good.”

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