By Karen Stokes
On Monday, President Biden hosted an event at the White House commemorating the historic achievement of the passage of the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act.
The bill is the most significant gun violence reduction legislation in the last 30 years and the President signed it into law on June 25th.
Joining the president on the South Lawn of the White House were survivors and family members of victims of mass shootings from Columbine, Virginia Tech, Aurora, Tucson, Sandy Hook, Parkland, Santa Fe, Uvalde, Buffalo, Highland Park and more.
Survivors and family members of daily acts of gun violence that don’t make national headlines were present, also elected officials representing communities affected by gun violence across the country and gun safety advocates and experts.
The law includes actions Biden has been calling for:
-Funds crisis intervention, including red-flag laws.
-Keeps guns out of the hands of people who are a danger to themselves and to others.
-Closes the boyfriend loophole.
-Requires young people under age 21 to undergo enhanced background checks.
-Includes the first-ever federal law that makes gun trafficking and straw purchases distinct federal crimes and clarifies who needs to register as a federally licensed gun dealer, and run background checks before selling a single weapon.
President Biden has made it clear that more needs to be done.
He will call on Congress to build on the bipartisan legislation he signed to keep dangerous guns out of dangerous hands by passing legislation that would ban assault weapons and high capacity magazines, strengthen background checks, and enact safe storage laws.
Biden will also confirm Steve Dettlebach as Director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).
The Biden Administration will continue to use all of the tools at its disposal to address the epidemic of gun violence. The President’s FY 2023 budget proposes $32 billion in additional funding to fight crime, including $20.6 billion in discretionary funding for federal law enforcement and state and local law enforcement and crime prevention programs, an increase of 11% over FY22 enacted ($18.6 billion) and 18% over FY21 enacted ($17.5 billion).
President Biden renewed his push for a new assault weapons ban while also calling for legislation to ensure safe storage of firearms.
“Assault weapons need to be banned,” Biden said. “I’m not going to stop until we do it.”
“We face, literally, a moral choice in this country — a moral choice with profound, real-world implications,” Biden said.