Connecticut to be deeply rooted in president's State of the Unio - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Connecticut to be deeply rooted in president's State of the Union address

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Tuesday night, the president is expected to make his last push for tougher gun control laws as part of his final State of the Union address.

Connecticut is already a huge part of that push.

While Gov. Dannel Malloy, a staunch gun control supporter, will sit in First Lady Michelle Obama’s guest box, Newtown parent Mark Barden will be at the capitol.

Both men, through their efforts, symbolize President Barack Obama’s sentiments on gun control.

Malloy helped put some of the toughest gun laws on the books in Connecticut.

Barden, whose son Daniel was killed in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in 2012, has also been involved in the gun control conversation with lawmakers. His efforts have been carried out by the Sandy Hook Promise group.

“We’re talking about prevention, we’re talking about identification and prevention and identifying this problem before it becomes a violent behavior and before the gun is even in the equation,” Barden told Eyewitness News.

Barden recently helped introduce the president on national television and took part in a town hall on gun violence.

He is the guest of Sen. Chris Murphy at the State of the Union.

Along with Malloy in the first lady’s guest box, there will be an empty seat to represent those lost to gun-related violence.

“I know what an empty seat means. I know it in my house. I know it very personally,” Barden said. “So I think that’s a powerful and touching gesture.”

The Congressional debate on gun control has not gone far.

The president is advocating for a slew of tighter rules, including universal background checks. Another measure includes a finger print requirement to fire the weapon.

That's something Malloy also supports.

"So a 3-year-old child doesn't find a gun in her mother's handbag at Walmart and kill her mother," Malloy said.

The National Rifle Association said it opposes those, but supports harsher penalties.

The State of the Union can be seen on Channel 3 starting at 9 p.m.

Eyewitness News will have updates from our crews in the nation's capital throughout the day.

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