Lawmakers spotted at 'March for Our Lives' rallies across US

Lawmakers spotted at 'March for Our Lives' rallies across US

Democratic lawmakers turned out in force on Saturday as hundreds of thousands of protesters gathered in cities across the country to call for an end to gun violence.

At "March for Our Lives" rallies across the U.S., congressional Democrats joined in calls demanding swift action on gun control more than a month after a deadly school shooting in Parkland, Fla., lent momentum to the debate over firearms.

During stops in Boston, Springfield and Worcester, Mass., Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenPelosi disputes Biden's power to forgive student loans Warren hits the airwaves for Newsom ahead of recall election Human rights can't be a sacrificial lamb for climate action MORE (D-Mass.) marched with students and documented the rallies on her Twitter account. 

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Sen. Chris Van HollenChristopher (Chris) Van HollenSenate Democrats press administration on human rights abuses in Philippines Civil rights activist Gloria Richardson dies Senate Democrats hit speedbumps with big spending plans MORE (D-Md.) joined protesters on Saturday in Washington, the epicenter of the rallies, where he told The Hill that attendance topped that of President TrumpDonald TrumpMyPillow CEO to pull ads from Fox News Haaland, Native American leaders press for Indigenous land protections Simone Biles, Vince Lombardi and the courage to walk away MORE's inauguration.

"I can tell you for sure, it's larger than the Trump inauguration."

Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), who attended rallies across Connecticut on Saturday, offered an assessment of the gun control movement, writing on Twitter that the current debate over firearm restrictions appeared poised to result in action. 

"This is what democracy looks like - and what America looks like, at its best. This time feels different, because activists across the nation were registering voters, not just making speeches. And they will vote," he said.

And in Atlanta, Rep. John LewisJohn LewisConstitutional rights are the exception Clintons, Stacey Abrams meeting Texas Democrats Virginia Democrats seek to tie Youngkin to Trump's election claims MORE (D-Ga.) touted his 'F' rating from the National Rifle Association (NRA), saying he would be happy to "flunk out of the NRA university over and over again."

"You know the NRA gave me an 'F,' and I'm proud, I'm proud to wear that 'F,' " he said. "So on the Democratic side of the House of Representatives, many members of Congress are wearing an 'F.' "

The "March for Our Lives" was planned by the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School students who survived a shooting in February that left 17 dead and 14 others injured. 

Since then, lawmakers have found themselves on the receiving end of political pressure from students, who have emerged as some of the most vocal advocates for tightening gun restrictions.

Sen. Bill NelsonClarence (Bill) William NelsonTom Brady to Biden: '40 percent of the people still don't think we won' Rubio, Demings rake in cash as Florida Senate race heats up How transparency on UFOs can unite a deeply divided nation MORE (D-Fla.), who is facing a potentially tough reelection bid this year, appeared at the march in Washington on Saturday, where he vowed to push for universal background checks for gun buyers and crack down on assault-style weapons like the one used to carry out the attack in Parkland.

"I'm marching for everyone that has had their lives cut short or forever changed by gun violence. I'm marching for the children who are too young to go to school yet. And I'm marching for everyone who doesn’t want to live in fear," Nelson tweeted. "I'm marching for their lives."

Sen. Claire McCaskillClaire Conner McCaskillGiuliani to stump for Greitens in Missouri McCaskill shares new July 4 family tradition: Watching Capitol riot video Joe Manchin's secret MORE (D-Mo.), who is also facing reelection in a state won by Trump in 2016, turned out to a march in St. Louis, where she praised turnout among young people. 

"So many people. So much passion. Honored to be part of it. Proud of all the young people whose voices are rising," she wrote on Twitter.

The protests on Saturday were bolstered by some of the Democratic Party's most recognizable voices, notably former President Obama, who tweeted a message of solidarity for students participating in the marches.

"Michelle and I are so inspired by all the young people who made today’s marches happen," he wrote. "Keep at it. You’re leading us forward. Nothing can stand in the way of millions of voices calling for change." 

Former Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonClintons, Stacey Abrams meeting Texas Democrats Biden says Russia spreading misinformation ahead of 2022 elections Highest-ranking GOP assemblyman in WI against another audit of 2020 vote MORE also weighed in on the "March for Our Lives," praising the student-led efforts as a "reminder of what is possible when our future is in the right hands."

"Listening to the students from Parkland and across the country today is a reminder of what is possible when our future is in the right hands, and when we match inspiration with determination," she tweeted.

And former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenFirst lady leaves Walter Reed after foot procedure Biden backs effort to include immigration in budget package MyPillow CEO to pull ads from Fox News MORE, a potential contender for the White House in 2020, surprised rallygoers at a "March for Our Lives" event in his home state of Delaware. He delivered remarks at a protest in Wilmington, where he praised students for resurfacing the debate over gun control. 

"What's happening now is you're ripping the Band-Aid off," he said. "You're forcing people to look squarely in the eye what they don't want to face."