President Obama Calls for Gun Control Legislation in Orlando

“I held and hugged grieving family members, and they asked, ‘Why does this keep happening?'”

Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP Photo

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In Orlando this afternoon, President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden met with victims’ families and survivors of the massacre at the Pulse LGBT nightclub that claimed the lives of 49 people just days ago.

Obama spoke about an increasingly urgent need for gun control legislation, saying “we need to work across political lines to do more to stop killers who want to terrorize us.”

“The last two terrorist attacks on our soil—Orlando and San Bernardino—were homegrown,” he said. “Our politics have conspired to make it as easy as possible for a terrorist or just a disturbed individual…to buy extraordinarily powerful weapons…legally.”

He insisted that the debate surrounding gun control needs to change, and called on the House and Senate to “rise to the moment and do the right thing” and pass legislation to curb access to weapons like the AR-15. 

“For so many [LGBT] people, the Pulse has been a safe haven…and on Sunday morning, that sanctuary was violated in the worst way possible,” Obama said. “Americans were targeted because we’re a country that’s learned to welcome everyone, no matter who you are or who you love.”

Watch his remarks in full below:

 

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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