(Washington, DC) – Today, U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) delivered a speech on the Senate floor, where he urged his colleagues to recommit their efforts to commonsense legislation to reduce gun violence in the wake of last week’s tragic shooting in Charleston, South Carolina. Recalling the tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut, Blumenthal commended the strength and inspiration offered by the families and loved ones of all the victims of gun violence and the dire need to take action and redouble efforts to prevent gun violence as well as to take positive, constructive, commonsense steps to help prevent future tragedies around the country.
Excerpts from Blumenthal’s speech are below. Watch the full speech here.
“Our hearts and prayers go out now to them as they have since that unimaginable tragedy, the violation not only of human life, but the sanctity of a place of worship, just as Newtown involved the violation of a place we regard as among the safest, our schoolhouse, killing our schoolchildren.”
“I will never forget that day, going to the firehouse in Sandy Hook, seeing the grief and pain experienced by those families who learned for the first time that their beautiful children would not be coming home that night. The searing memory of their faces and voices will be with me forever, and their courage and strength in the wake of that tragedy will inspire me forever.”
“We can make sure that this country does more than grieve and remember, but redouble its commitment as a nation to make our nation safer and better. And not just for those nine innocent people in a church in Charleston, or 26 innocent people in a schoolhouse in Sandy Hook, but for the 11,000 people every year on the streets of Hartford and Stamford in Connecticut, in our rural and suburban communities, on our military bases throughout our country, 11,000 people who die every year from gun violence.”
“We should think of others and work together…regardless of party, part of the country, race or religion, regardless of where we live or what our interest is, because we have a common, shared interest in making our nation safer and better.”
“I hope that we will not only share the grief and pain of those brave and courageous families in South Carolina who were so heroic in the face of evil, but resolve that we will redouble our efforts to raise awareness, to organize people who are of goodwill and want to stop gun violence, and who need to be heard. Because the vast majority of the American people want us to take commonsense, sensible measures to make America safer and better.”