Dec 14, 2021 - Politics & Policy

"We owe them action": Biden marks anniversary of Sandy Hook shooting

President Joe Biden speaks before signing an executive order on delivering government services in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Monday, Dec. 13, 2021.

President Biden speaks before signing an executive order on delivering government services on Dec. 13. Photo: Shawn Thew/EPA/Bloomberg via Getty Images

President Biden in a video statement Tuesday commemorated the ninth anniversary of the Sandy Hook shooting and urged the Senate to pass stricter gun control legislation.

Driving the news: "In Parkland, Florida, and Oxford, Michigan, in countless communities across the country, there's these horrific shootings that make national headlines and embarrass us as a nation," Biden said. "As a nation, we owe all of these families more than our prayers, we owe them action."

State of play: Biden called on the Senate to pass "three common-sense" House-passed pieces of legislation, including the Build Back Better Act, which has provisions for community violence interventions.

  • He also urged action on a bill requiring background checks for all gun sales, and legislation to keep guns out of the hands of "more dangerous domestic abusers," according to the White House.
  • Biden also seeks to ban assault weapons and high capacity magazines, among other pieces of legislation, the White House said.

The big picture: The shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School on Dec. 14, 2012, in Newtown, Connecticut, killed 26 people, including 20 children.

  • "No matter how hard it's been, every one of those families relives the news they got that day," Biden said. "Everything changed that morning for you, and the nation was shocked."
  • Biden's remarks also comes two weeks after a 15-year-old was arrested and accused of killing four students and wounding seven other people during a shooting in Oxford, Michigan.

The bottom line: "May God bless all those innocent lives in Newtown and all across the country, and all of you who have been victims of gun violence and your families have suffered from it."

  • "My heart breaks for you, but we have to act."
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