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President Biden on Tuesday implored the Senate to pass new gun control measures in the wake of a mass shooting that left 10 dead in Boulder, Colorado, this week.
Biden said he didn’t “want to wait another minute, let alone an hour,” to act on gun violence.
He urged the House and Senate to ban “assault weapons,” as he said he did as a senator.
“I got that done as a senator. It brought down mass shootings, we can do it again,” Biden said. “We can ban assault weapons and high-capacity magazines in this country once again.”
Among other efforts, the Senate took up an assault weapons ban in 2013, after the shooting that left 20 children and six adults dead, but it failed in a 40-60 vote.
Sens. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., and Pat Toomey, R-Pa., led a bipartisan effort to close commercial background check loopholes that year, but their effort fell six votes short of passage.
The president also called on the Senate to pass two House bills that closed loopholes on background checks, including the Charleston loophole.
“These are bills that received votes with both Republicans and Democrats in the House. This is not and should not be a partisan issue. This is an American issue that will save lives, American lives. And we have to act. We should also ban assault weapons in the process,” Biden said.
The House passed an expansion of gun background checks in March. The two bills expand federal gun background checks on all firearms sales and extend the background check review period from three days to a minimum of 10 business days. One bill would close the “Charleston loophole,” where a gun sale is allowed to proceed if the background check is not completed in three days.
According to police, 21-year-old Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa opened fire at a grocery store on Monday, leaving nine civilians and one police officer dead.
Officials said they are still working to determine a motive in the shooting.
Monday’s midafternoon attack was the seventh mass killing this year in the U.S., following the March 16 shooting that left eight people dead at three Atlanta-area massage businesses, according to a database compiled by the Associated Press, USA Today and Northeastern University.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said Tuesday the Senate will specifically move to expand gun background checks – an effort that has long evaded passage in the upper chamber.
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“We cannot seem to finish grieving one tragedy before another takes place,” Schumer said of the back-to-back Atlanta and Boulder mass shootings. “It is a reminder that we must confront a devastating truth in the United States: an unrelenting epidemic of gun violence steals innocent lives with alarming regularity.”
Six days before the Boulder shooting, a gunman shot and killed eight, six of them Asian American, at various spas in Atlanta, Georgia.
Fox News’ Marisa Schultz and Stephanie Pagones contributed to this report.
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