Biden: Congress Needs
to Act to Reduce Gun Violence
June 19, 2013
A little more than
six months after the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary, Vice President
Biden said yesterday that he and President Obama have not given up the
fight to reduce gun violence.
In January, the Vice President said, “the President and I stood in this
very room, joined by the victims of gun violence, parents, teachers,
members of law enforcement, and many others, as we made a simple promise
to the American people. We said we will do everything that we can,
everything in our power to reduce gun violence in this country."
And although a minority of the Senate voted down common-sense
legislation that would keep our kids and communities safer, President
Obama has "moved forward on what was within his power, what executive
actions he could take," the Vice President explained. "Today, I can
report that he announced 23 executive actions; 21 of them have been
completed or there has been major progress made toward the total
completion and that we’re on track to finish the job."
Progress includes strengthening the existing background check system to
help keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people, giving law
enforcement officials more of the tools they need to prevent and respond
to gun crime, making schools safer and ensuring they are prepared to
respond to emergencies, encouraging responsible gun ownership, ending
the freeze on gun violence research, and improving access to mental
Administration has more work to do to complete the remainder of the
executive actions, and work will continue on these important steps in
the weeks and months ahead.
But Congress must also act. Passing common-sense gun safety legislation,
including expanding background checks and making gun trafficking a
federal crime, remains the single most important step we could take to
reduce gun violence.
“As proud as the President is, as proud as I am of the progress we’ve
made, we need Congress to act,” the Vice President said. “The American
people are demanding it."