Oak Creek mayor goes to D.C. to push for gun law changes

CREATED Jan. 14, 2013

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OAK CREEK - On the heels of the Sikh Temple massacre, Oak Creek's Mayor is pushing for change -- and heading to Washington to meet with the Vice President.

Mayor Steve Scaffidi was thrust into the international spotlight.

Now, he's headed to the White House for a frank discussion about guns and mass shootings, and what can be done to keep what happened in his city from happening anywhere else.

"It's incredible to go to Washington, DC and be asked to go there, but to participate in a discussion that's as importatnt as this one is something I want to do," said Scaffidi.

Scaffidi leaves Wednesday for the Conference of Mayors in Washington, DC. Just about every topic is on the table, but Scaffidi will be part of a select group meeting with Vice President Joe Biden to talk about mass shootings across the country.

"We faced pretty horrific events as some of the other cities did, so we're on the ground, we see what happened, we see the response, we see what the problem might be, so I think getting that perspective instead of just looking at it from on-high in Washington, maybe that brings something else to the table they're not thinking of."

Scaffidi will see some of the Mayors who called him when Wade Page opened fire nearly six months ago.

"Just for example, Aurora. Steve Hogan reached out to me on August 5th and gave me some great advice that day to be calm and reassure your community. They’re things that I've tried to use since then," explained Scaffidi.

Sadly, that role became his when the Newtown shooting took place. The goal is to open minds with an open discussion. A gun owner himself, Scaffidi wants what he calls “common sense” reforms, like safe gun storage and more resources for mental health. And he says there's a way to balance it all, if people are willing to try.

"To me, saying there's just too many guns and the second amendment says you can't do anything about that is just throwing in the towel. We wouldn't accept that argument for any other problem we have in this country so why would we accept it for guns."