President Obama has appointed VP Joe Biden to lead an effort that will work on concrete proposals for changes to gun laws in America, following Friday’s massacre in Sandy Hook elementary school, where 26 people, including 20 children, were murdered.

The U.S. President set a January deadline for recommendations and vowed to push for implementation of the policy proposals without delay.

He said that Friday's deadly shooting had been "a wake-up call for all of us."

“This time, the words need to lead to action,” Obama said during an announcement in the White House on Wednesday.

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He also asked Congress to reinstate an assault weapons ban which expired in 2004 and called for stricter background checks on people who purchase weapons.

“The fact that this problem is complex can no longer be an excuse for doing nothing,” Obama said.

“The fact that we can’t prevent every act of violence doesn’t mean we can’t steadily reduce the violence.”

In his address, Obama spoke directly to gun owners saying he believes in the Second Amendment, adding, “the vast majority of gun owners in America are responsible."

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Responding to the news, New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg described the announcement as an important step in the right direction, as he offered his full support to both Obama and Biden.

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“The country needs his leadership if we are going to reduce the daily bloodshed from gun violence that we have seen for too long. The task force must move quickly with its work, as 34 Americans will be murdered with guns every day that passes without common sense reforms to our laws,” Bloomberg said in a statement.

President Obama, with Vice President Biden at his side on Wednesday, at a news conference about gun violenceMandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images