Vice President Kamala Harris visited Highland Park in Illinois on Tuesday and called for federal action on assault weapons in the country.
“We have to be smarter as a country in terms of who has access to what, particularly offensive weapons,” she said as she offered her condolences to the victims of the previous day’s mass shooting in suburban Chicago.
At least seven people were killed and dozens injured after a rooftop gunman opened fire during the July 4 parade in Highland Park — about 25 miles north of downtown Chicago — sending hundreds of protesters, parents and children fleeing on bicycles in horror situation. .
“We have to take these things seriously,” the vice president said, referring to the mass shooting. “The entire nation must understand and have a level of empathy to understand that this can happen anywhere in any peace-loving society. And we must stand together and talk about why it has stopped.”
Earlier in the day, she had called for the reinstatement of the national assault weapons ban.
“We have more to do. Congress needs to have the courage to act and renew the assault weapons ban. We need sensible gun safety laws. And we need Congress to stop protecting these gun manufacturers with a liability shield. Repeal it. Repeal it.”
Ms. Harris also offered President Joe Biden’s condolences during her speech. “You know you have an entire nation that cares deeply about you and stands with you. This is an incredibly narrow community,” said Mrs. Harris.
“And that person will be brought to justice, but it will not reverse what happened,” she added, referring to suspected gunman Robert “Bobby” e Cremo III.
He is expected to appear in court on Wednesday, a day after he was charged with seven counts of first-degree murder. If convicted, Illinois attorney Eric Reinhart said he would face life in prison without the possibility of parole. Prosecutors will ask the judge to deny bail.
Meanwhile, his parents released a statement through their attorney: “We are all mothers, fathers, sisters and brothers, and this is a terrible tragedy for so many families, victims, optimists, community and us. Our hearts, thoughts and prayers are with everyone.”