Biden renews calls for Congress to pass ‘my assault weapon ban’
President Biden renewed pressure on Congress to pass an assault weapons ban after a Nashville woman carrying two semi-automatic rifles killed six at an elementary school.
Biden opened his remarks at the Small Business Association Women’s Summit by joking about how his sister Valerie is smarter than him and talking about his love of chocolate chip ice cream before he struck a more serious tone to address the mass shooting.
‘You know, Ben and I’ve been doing this our whole careers it seems and it’s just sick,’ Biden said, referring to Small Business Committee chair Sen. Ben Cardin, D-Md., who was in the audience.
‘It’s ripping our communities apart, ripping the soul, this nation ripped at the very soul of the nation. And we have to do more to protect our schools so they aren’t turned into prisons.
He noted that the 28-year-old shooter was reportedly carrying two assault weapons and a pistol.
‘You know, Ben and I’ve been doing this our whole careers it seems and it’s just sick,’ Biden said, referring to Small Business Committee chair Sen. Ben Cardin, D-Md.
‘So I call on Congress again to pass my assault weapons ban. It’s about time that we began to make some more progress but there’s more to learn.
Biden then referenced his son Beau who died of brain cancer in 2015, noting that now school teachers and students – like service members – must be suffering post-traumatic stress disorder.
‘These children, these teachers, we should be focusing on their mental health as well.’
The White House said ‘enough is enough’ after the latest mass shooting at an American school – this time at an elementary school outside Nashville.
‘What we’re seeing at schools and communities across this country is unacceptable,’ said White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre.
‘What we saw today is devastating, is heartbreaking for any American,’ she added, noting that President Joe Biden will address the shooting during prescheduled remarks later Monday afternoon.
She called the news ‘devastating’ and ‘heartbreaking for any American,’ but didn’t provide concrete information on any new executive orders President Biden might be planning. She made repeated references to stalled legislative proposals in Congress.
Her official response was buttressed by remarks by First Lady Jill Biden, who spoke at a conference in Washington Monday. Biden she is ‘without words’ as she became the first person in the White House to react publicly to news of a school shooting in Nashville that left three children dead.
The first lady spoke as new details were emerging about the latest mass shooting to leave young children dead at school, prompting the White House to say Monday that ‘enough is enough.’
‘I am truly without words, and our children deserve better. We stand with Nashville in prayer,’ Biden said during an address at the National League of Cities conference.
Six people – including three children – are dead after a 28-year-old female shooter opened fire at a private school in Nashville.
First Lady Jill Biden said she is ‘without words’ as she was the first person in the White House to publicly react to news of a school shooting in Nashville that left three children dead
The incident took place at the Covenant School, an elementary school on the outskirts of the city.
At the White House, Jean-Pierre spoke about the tragic shooting at the top of her daily press briefing and fielded numerous questions on it, amid a years-long stalemate in Congress and the expiration of an assault weapons ban that had been law but expired .
She pointed to executive action President Joe Biden took after two previous mass shootings, but used stark language to call on Congress to do more legislatively.
‘It’s not enough. We must do more,’ she said. She said Biden ‘wants Congress to act, because enough is enough.’
‘How many more children have to be murdered before Republicans in Congress will step up to pass the assault weapons ban, to close loopholes … or to require the safe storage of guns?’ said Jean-Pierre.
Biden helped lead the effort for a semi-automatic assault weapons and high-capacity magazine ban in 1994, but that legislation expired in 2004.
She said Biden had been briefed on the “heartbreaking” news of the shooting. She expressed the president’s ‘appreciation for first responders and prayers for all the families affected by the shooting.’
“Too often our schools and communities are being devastated” by gun violence, she said.
‘Schools should be safe spaces for our kids to grow and learn and for our educators to teach,’ she said.
She referenced four elements of legislation: background checks for all gun sales (dealing with the so-called gun show loophole; background checks on all sales; legislation on high-capacity magazines; and eliminating liability from suits for gun manufacturers.
‘Those are things that they can do,’ she said of Congress.
Earlier this month Biden signed an executive order aimed at expanding background checks by closing a loophole that allowed some gun sellers not to conduct background checks before proceeding with a sale.
Police say the shooter – who has not yet been named – killed three kids and three adults before being shot dead by police. Her identity has not yet been confirmed.
Shortly before 10:13 am, the shooter entered the school through a side door and began opening fire on the second floor.
Police arrived at the scene and heard the gunshots coming from the 2nd floor.