Half Moon Bay shooting: Biden rips second ‘senseless act of gun violence’ in California in 3 days

Biden condemns second ‘senseless act of gun violence’ in California in three days after Half Moon Bay shooting left seven dead – and urges Congress raise age of buying assault weapons to 21

  • President Joe Biden released a statement on Tuesday morning on the ‘heinous attack’ that has taken at least seven lives in Half Moon Bay California
  • Comes after 11 people were killed celebrating Lunar New Year in Monterey Park 
  • Congressional Democrats reintroduced an assault weapons ban on Monday 

President Joe Biden released a forceful statement Tuesday morning on the ‘senseless act of gun violence’ that took seven lives in Half Moon Bay the night before – the second mass shooting California has seen in just days.

The White House also once again urged Congress to raise the minimum age for buying an assault weapon to 21 after at least 18 people were killed between the two horrific slayings.  

On Saturday, a gunman opened fire at a dance studio in Monterey Park, California, where people were celebrating the Lunar New Year. Ten people were killed that night, while another victim succumbed to their wounds on Monday.

‘Jill and I are praying for those killed and injured in the latest tragic shooting in Half Moon Bay, California,’ the president said.

‘For the second time in recent days, California communities are mourning the loss of loved ones in a senseless act of gun violence.’

Police officers detain a man, believed by law enforcement to be the Half Moon Bay mass shooting suspect, in Half Moon Bay, California, U.S., January 23, 2023

Police officers detain a man, believed by law enforcement to be the Half Moon Bay mass shooting suspect, in Half Moon Bay, California, U.S., January 23, 2023

Screenshot from a video shows emergency responders assisting a person to an ambulance following a shooting at Monterey Park, California, U.S.

Screenshot from a video shows emergency responders assisting a person to an ambulance following a shooting at Monterey Park, California, U.S.

Biden said he’s directing federal ‘support’ to Half Moon Bay’s local officials and greater community after the ‘heinous attack.’

‘Yesterday, Senator Feinstein — alongside Senators Murphy, Blumenthal and others — reintroduced a federal Assault Weapons Ban and legislation that would raise the minimum purchase age for assault weapons to 21,’ the president said.

‘Even as we await further details on these shootings, we know the scourge of gun violence across America requires stronger action. 

‘I once again urge both chambers of Congress to act quickly and deliver this Assault Weapons Ban to my desk, and take action to keep American communities, schools, workplaces, and homes safe.’

A federal ban on the sale of more than a dozen assault-style weapons was in effect from 1994 through 2004, as part of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994. 

People who already owned such weapons were not forced to give them up.

But during that time, data has shown that the rate and likelihood of mass shootings dropped.

President Joe Biden called Monday's slaughter a 'heinous attack' and mourned the lives lost for the second time in under a week

President Joe Biden called Monday’s slaughter a ‘heinous attack’ and mourned the lives lost for the second time in under a week

Then-Senator Biden was a major proponent of the law.

Multiple efforts to revive the ban in the nearly 20 years since it expired, chiefly led by Democrats, have failed.

‘It is far past time to reenact an assault weapons ban and get these weapons of war out of our communities,’ Democrat Rep. David Cicilline of Rhode Island said on Monday when introducing the latest effort. 

‘We passed the assault weapons ban in the House last year with bipartisan support, which was then blocked by Senate Republicans.’

Senator Dianne Feinstein of California said, ‘The constant stream of mass shootings have one common thread: they almost all involve assault weapons. It’s because these weapons were designed to kill as many people as quickly as possible. They have no business in our communities or schools.’

But such legislation is unlikely to get enough Republicans on board to reach the 60-vote threshold needed for it to pass.

On the House side, the climb is even steeper with a Republican-controlled majority that has made clear they have no intention of straying from their gun control-averse line.

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