“I think the biggest thing to highlight here is that the president has been a friend to the gun violence prevention (GVP) movement this year and we’re thankful, but frankly, he hasn’t really been a leader,” said Zeenat Yahya, deputy policy director at March for Our Lives.
“We’re definitely surprised. We were really hopeful and he made a lot of promises. We are thankful for some of the actions the president has already taken but there is so much more he can do that’s a comprehensive top-to-bottom approach,” Yahya added.
Advocates wanted Biden to apply more pressure on Congress to move on gun violence, where a 50-50 Senate evenly divided between the parties is a major impediment. Activists acknowledge the political roadblocks, but express disappointment nonetheless.
“It is very difficult for any administration to sort of do enough in that context and I think indeed, we would like to see more from the Biden administration. What we need more than anything right now is a comprehensive strategy to deal with this reality, what is the plan?” said Peter Ambler, executive director and co-founder of Giffords, the gun control group founded by former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.), who was gravely wounded in a shooting.
“Do I think they’ve done the most of any administration? It’s not enough,” said Fred Guttenberg, senior adviser of Brady PAC and father of a victim in the 2018 Parkland, Fla., school shooting.
— Alex Gangitano in Gun control advocates express disappointment with Biden