Biden marks anniversary of Pulse nightclub shooting: 'There is more we must do'

Biden marks anniversary of Pulse nightclub shooting: 'There is more we must do'
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President BidenJoe BidenFive takeaways from the Ohio special primaries FDA aims to give full approval to Pfizer vaccine by Labor Day: report Overnight Defense: Police officer killed in violence outside Pentagon | Biden officials back repeal of Iraq War authorization | NSC pushed to oversee 'Havana Syndrome' response MORE marked the fifth anniversary of the deadly mass shooting at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Fla., on Saturday, acknowledging the nation must do more to address gun violence.

Biden said in a statement "there is more we must do to address the public health epidemic of gun violence in all of its forms."

The president reiterated his calls to close loopholes allowing gun buyers to circumvent background checks, ban high-capacity weapons and eliminate liability protections for gun manufacturers, urging the closely divided Senate to support House-passed gun legislation.

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He highlighted the particular impact of gun violence on the LGBT community in Orlando, after 49 people were killed when a gunman opened fire into the gay nightclub during Pride month in 2016.  The gunman died in a shootout with police.

“We must drive out hate and inequities that contribute to the epidemic of violence and murder against transgender women – especially transgender women of color,” Biden said. “We must create a world in which our LGBTQ+ young people are loved, accepted, and feel safe in living their truth.”

Congress passed legislation designating the Pulse nightclub the “National Pulse Memorial” to commemorate those who were killed. Biden plans to sign the bill in the coming days.

The president on Saturday called the shooting “the deadliest attack affecting the LGBTQ+ community in American history, and at the time, the deadliest mass shooting by a single gunman.”

“Within minutes, the Pulse nightclub that had long been a place of acceptance and joy turned into a place of unspeakable pain and loss,” Biden said.

“In the memory of all of those lost at the Pulse nightclub five years ago, let us continue the work to be a nation at our best – one that recognizes and protects the dignity and safety of every American,” he said.