DANBURY - Vice President Joe Biden spoke at a panel discussion on gun violence at Western Connecticut State University in Danbury today.

Biden pushed President Obama's recent gun control proposals. He encouraged lawmakers to show political courage and pass legislation and spoke of an emerging consensus on the issue. The vice president also called for universal background checks.

Sen. Richard Blumenthal, who co-hosted the event, called for a universal ban on assault weapons and large-capacity magazines.

Biden was joined on the panel by U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch and the mother of one of the children killed in the Sandy Hook shooting.

Gun makers and lobbyists were not invited to participate. The discussion was organized by members of Connecticut's congressional delegation.

Following the seminar, Gov. Dannel Malloy unveiled his own plan to reduce gun violence, including an immediate ban on high-capacity magazines, an expansion on the state's assault weapons ban and required background checks.