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Mpls. hosts gun summit; Dayton thinking more about changing Minn. laws

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Political and law enforcement leaders from across the Midwest gathered in Minneapolis for a summit on how to reduce gun violence and said they see a new political will to make changes.

The mayors, police chiefs, and prosecutors say mass killings like last month's rampage in Newtown, Connecticut, galvanize public attention. But they are as worried about day-to-day shootings that often get little attention. As Milwaukee's police chief put it, in America's cities "there's a slow-motion mass murder taking place every year."

The Minneapolis meeting was organized before the Newtown shootings and was the product of discussions between Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak and his Milwaukee counterpart, Tom Barrett.

Meanwhile, Gov. Mark Dayton discussed what can be done about gun violence in a conference call with Vice-President Joe Biden. Biden has been putting together the Obama administration's recommendations for change in the wake of the Newtown massacre and says his proposals will be ready for public disclosure Tuesday.

An aide to Dayton tells the Star Tribune the governor will be interested in what Biden proposes and is thinking seriously about changes to Minnesota gun laws. In the wake of the Newtown killings, Dayton said he'd consider changes but noted that the Second Amendment limits what states can do to restrict gun ownership.

Recently, though, more states are moving toward tighter gun laws. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo made the issue the centerpiece of his State of the State address this week.

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