Petraeus, Mark Kelly form new gun control group

Petraeus, Mark Kelly form new gun control group
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Gen. David Petraeus and retired astronaut Mark Kelly announced Friday they are forming a new gun control group for veterans.

The Veterans Coalition for Common Sense will push to strengthen gun background check laws and help prevent veterans from committing suicide. It pointed to several alarming statistics about the military and gun violence.

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According to the Department of Veteran Affairs (VA), about 22 veterans kill themselves each day.

Since September 11, 2001, more Americans have been killed by gun violence than combat in Iraq and Afghanistan, according to figures from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 

“As service members, each of us swore an oath to protect our Constitution and the homeland,” said Kelly, who formed another gun control group with his wife, former Rep. Gabby Giffords (D-Ariz.), after she was shot and seriously wounded during a mass shooting in 2011. 

“Now we're asking our leaders to do more to protect our rights and save lives,” Kelly added in the statement. “Gabby and I are grateful to all of these incredible veterans and leaders who are using their voice to call for commonsense change that makes our communities safer.”

In addition to Petraeus, the former CIA director, and Kelly, a number of other generals and admirals will join the group, including another former CIA director, Michael Hayden, and retired Adm. Thad Allen.