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By Mark Reynolds December 21, 2015

Talk, but no concrete action, on gun control

About four months before her election, Gina Raimondo drew some extra attention to her proposals for gun control when she talked about gun deaths in Providence.

The gubernatorial candidate reissued her call for a ban on military-style weapons.

On her campaign website, Raimondo also pledged a ban on high-capacity magazines, which make it possible to fire greater numbers of bullets without reloading, and she promised other "common-sense gun control measures."

Since she took office in January, the nation has experienced a fresh string of mass killings carried out by people with guns -- including military-style weapons, such as the AR-15 assault rifles fired this month by two California residents loyal to the Islamic State.

We decided to check in on Raimondo's progress toward greater gun control.

To date, she has not signed any gun-control legislation -- no such legislation made it through the 2015 General Assembly session, which was Raimondo's first. (Gun-control bills submitted by the attorney general and several legislators never even made it out of committee.)

While the governor is talking publicly about gun control, the administration has not yet sponsored any legislative proposal to ban military-type weapons or institute other "common-sense" measures.

Former Gov. Lincoln Chafee had failed in his pursuit of a ban on military-style weapons, including the AR-15, after the massacre of 26 people, including 20 first-graders, in Newtown, Connecticut, in 2012.

On Dec. 9, Raimondo convened a two-hour discussion about ways to reduce gun violence, gathering comments from judges, public defenders, General Assembly members, a police chief and the state police. Other participants included the Second Amendment Coalition, health advocates, elected officials, state department leaders and nonprofit organizations dedicated to nonviolence.

The governor's spokeswoman, Marie Aberger, said the discussion was part of Raimondo's commitment to enact gun-control laws during the 2016 legislative session.

"The governor continues to support these measures she spoke about during the campaign, and other common-sense solutions," Aberger said in an email. "Our focus this year will be on policies we believe we can accomplish this session together with the General Assembly."

The gathering two weeks ago was a first step -- 11 months into Raimondo's tenure. But it's only a first step. The administration hasn't yet done anything concrete toward proposing gun-control measures.

Without any specific legislative proposal, we cannot say this initiative is "in the works" -- or that the promise has been compromised or broken.

We rate this promise Stalled.

Our Sources

Referenced in the promise update.

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