President Joe Biden speaks when he meets with senators from both parties at the White House on February 11, 2021.
Doug Mills-Pool / Getty Images
President Joe Biden on Sunday called on Congress to tighten gun laws on the third anniversary of the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.
“Today, as we mourn with the Parkland community, we mourn all those who lost loved ones to gun violence,” Biden said in a statement released by the White House.
The president called for several provisions, including background checks of all arms sales, a ban on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, and the lifting of immunity from arms manufacturers.
“This government will not wait for the next mass shootings to respond to this call. We will take steps to end our gun violence epidemic and make our schools and communities safer,” said Biden. “We owe it to everyone we have lost and everyone who has been left behind to grieve in order to change something.”
Fourteen students and three employees were killed in the Parkland shootings. The student survivors started the March for Our life movement in support of the gun legislation.
Spokeswoman Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., Said in a statement Sunday that Congress will work with the Biden administration to pass two background check laws. The House passed the bipartisan background screening law and the extended background screening law during the last Congress.
“On this solemn remembrance, Democrats join the American people in renewing our commitment to our unfinished work and ensuring that no family or community is forced to endure the pain of gun violence,” Pelosi said. “We will not rest until all Americans, in schools, at work, in places of worship, and in our communities, are once and for all safe.”
Susan Rice, head of the White House Home Affairs Council, and Cedric Richmond, a senior adviser to Biden, hosted a virtual meeting with leaders of gun violence prevention advocacy groups last week to discuss how gun violence can be reduced.