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Local government and religious leaders in Michigan call for more federal gun control laws

Government and religious leaders from Lansing, Flint and Saginaw came together today to call for new federal gun control laws.

All three cities saw an increase in murders in 2012.

The group, Mayors Against Illegal Guns, wants the federal government to require background checks for all gun sales.    It also wants a ban on assault weapons and an expansion of gun trafficking laws.

Darnell Earley is Saginaw’s city manager.   He says something must be done to stop what he calls “neighborhood warfare.”

“I’m not sure the president can solve it. I’m not sure the Congress can solve it,” says Earley,  “But I think that together as a group we can come up with an…answer to this issue. And restore safety and community and quality of life in the neighborhoods that we all live.”

Officials at today’s news conference conceded that they couldn’t claim that the proposed changes to federal gun laws would have prevented any of the murders in their cities in 2012. 

The White House could announce its plans for new gun control legislation as early as this week.

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Public since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting.
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