US President Joe Biden pushed for gun control legislation Wednesday evening in his first major address to Congress.
Banning assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, as well as closing background check loopholes, are proposals the president is hoping to sign during his administration.
“These kinds of reasonable reforms have overwhelming support from the American people, including many gun owners. The country supports reform, and Congress should act. This shouldn’t be a red or blue issue,” Biden said, urging legislators to take action.
Research shows the US gun violence epidemic remains an outlier among developed countries. In 2019, the US recorded a violent gun death rate of 3.96 per 100,000 people, while other countries, like the UK, Norway and South Korea, all recorded rates at 0.07 or below.
The president also cited a need to address ghost guns. Such weapons are made with manufactured components but can be assembled independently by purchasers and are not assigned a serial number, making the weapon untraceable.
The renewed push comes after the country saw two mass shootings within a week of one another. Last month, eight were killed in a spree of massage parlor shootings in the Atlanta area, and 10 lives were lost in a shooting in a Colorado grocery store.
While pro-gun rights groups suggest Biden’s proposals would be a return to failed policies, gun control advocates joined Biden’s call for Congress to take action.