By Justin Sink and Jonathan Easley - 06/13/13 04:45 PM EDT
President Obama and Vice President Biden will meet with families of victims of the Sandy Hook shooting on Thursday afternoon at the White House.
It will be the president's first known in-person meeting with victims’ families since a bipartisan gun control bill failed in the Senate. The vote prompted a fiery statement from the president in the Rose Garden, where he was surrounded by some of the same family members.
Obama at the time called it a “pretty shameful day for Washington,” and vowed to press on for a background check bill.
“Sooner or later we are going to get this right,” he said.
Thursday’s meeting comes amid a furious push by gun control reform activists to reignite a debate on Capitol Hill.
New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s group Mayors Against Illegal Guns bused the Newtown Action Alliance into Washington. The citizen group, which is in part made up of families of Sandy Hook victims, will hold a press conference, hand-deliver messages to lawmakers and form a “human ribbon remembrance” of the victims at Capitol Hill on Thursday.
Other family members met Wednesday with Sen. Joe ManchinJoe ManchinNew Guccifer 2.0 dump highlights ‘wobbly Dems’ on Iran deal Senate Dems introduce Iran sanctions extension Overnight Finance: Senate punts on Zika funding | House panel clears final spending bill | Biz groups press Treasury on tax rules | Obama trade rep confident Pacific deal passes this year MORE (D-W.Va.), a co-sponsor of the Senate background checks bill, as well as Speaker John BoehnerJohn BoehnerConservative allies on opposite sides in GOP primary fight Clinton maps out first 100 days The Hill's 12:30 Report MORE (R-Ohio), Majority Leader Eric CantorEric CantorDavid Brat may run for Senate if Kaine becomes VP The Hill's 12:30 Report Lobbying world MORE (R-Va.) and Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).
On Friday, Mayors Against Illegal Guns begins its “No More Names” nationwide bus tour, in which family members of gun violence victims will visit 25 states over 100 days. Members of the group plan to stand in front of the hometown offices of lawmakers opposed to gun control reform in an attempt to convince the Senate to reconsider the background checks bill.
The renewed efforts are aimed at four Democrats in particular — Sens. Mark PryorMark PryorCotton pitches anti-Democrat message to SC delegation Ex-Sen. Kay Hagan joins lobby firm Top Democrats are no advocates for DC statehood MORE (Ark.), Max BaucusMax BaucusGlover Park Group now lobbying for Lyft Wyden unveils business tax proposal College endowments under scrutiny MORE (Mont.), Mark BegichMark BegichSenate GOP deeply concerned over Trump effect Ex-Sen. Kay Hagan joins lobby firm Unable to ban Internet gambling, lawmakers try for moratorium MORE (Alaska) and Heidi HeitkampHeidi HeitkampFeds weigh minimum train crew sizes Senate Dems push Obama for more Iran transparency Emerging technology-based consensus may help clear the air MORE (N.D.) — who all voted against the background checks bill.
If those four were to switch sides, the bill would likely need only one additional Republican defector to squeeze through the Senate.