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VP Joe Biden: 'No legal reason' the US can't tax violent media


Vice President Joe Biden has been on the front lines of the gun violence debate since the mass shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, in December. In January, Biden led a task force assigned by President Barack Obama to examine possible means of curtailing gun violence in the US, and his findings prompted Obama to call for scientific research into the effects of violent media on young minds.

Earlier in May, Biden met behind closed doors with 20 representatives from faith-based organizations to discuss gun control and immigration, and he briefly addressed video games, Politico reports. Franklin Graham, son of evangelist Billy Graham, proposed to Biden that "media and entertainment that portray violence should be subject to a special tax, with the proceeds going to help victims and their families," according to Rabbi Julie Schonfeld.

Biden replied that there was "no restriction on the ability to do that; there's no legal reason why they couldn't" place a tax on violent media, Sister Marjorie Clark told Politico. Biden again emphasized the need for more research into the subject, Clark added: "He said they really need a good scientific study, which they've done on things like smoking."

During his initial fact-finding meetings in January, Biden expressed particular interest in speaking with inter-faith organizations, though he met with a wide swathe of communities, including entertainment companies, advocacy groups, youth organizations, the mental health community and the NRA.

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