4 US governors, including Murphy, join forces on gun safety

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TRENTON -

The governors of Connecticut, New York, New Jersey and Rhode Island are forming a coalition of like-minded states on gun control, hoping to make progress where they see the federal government has faltered.

The four Democrats announced the formation of "States for Gun Safety" on Thursday, about a week after the mass shooting at a Florida high school. New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy said the shooting accelerated their idea to form the coalition, which has been in the works for about a year.

Murphy, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy and Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo formed the new multi-state partnership to combat gun violence and invited other states from across the nation to join the new effort.

“Gun violence is not a New Jersey problem, a New York problem, a Connecticut problem, a Rhode Island problem or a problem for any particular state or region - it is a national problem,” Murphy said in a written statement. “However, we cannot wait for Congress or the president to act.”

Under the new coalition, a multi-state task force will be created to trace and intercept illegal guns in the region. The states will also work in cooperation to enhance intelligence gathering, information sharing and response efforts related to gun violence. 

Participating states will leverage collective investigative resources in order to determine comprehensive, coordinated plans for gun violence responses, according to a press release from Murphy’s office.

The four governors will urge others to join the coalition at this weekend's National Governors Association meeting.

The Associated Press news wire service contributed to this report.

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