Biden calls deadly shooting at LGBTQ nightclub in Colorado Springs a 'senseless attack' that 'happens far too often': 'Get weapons of war off America's streets'

Joe Biden
President Joe Biden is under pressure from Senate Democrats to declare climate change a national emergency.Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images
  • President Biden denounced the mass shooting that occurred at an LGBTQ nightclub over the weekend.

  • "We cannot and must not tolerate hate," Biden said Sunday.

  • Police said at least five people were killed, and many others were injured from the attack at Club Q in Colorado Springs.

President Joe Biden released a statement denouncing the "senseless attack" at an LGBTQ nightclub in Colorado that left five people dead and more than a dozen others wounded.

"Gun violence continues to have a devastating and particular impact on LGBTQI+ communities across our nation, and threats of violence are increasing," Biden said in a statement Sunday afternoon, citing the 2016 Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando, Florida, and the growing violence against transgender people.

"Places that are supposed to be safe spaces of acceptance and celebration should never be turned into places of terror and violence," the statement continued. "Yet it happens far too often. We must drive out the inequities that contribute to violence against LGBTQI+ people. We cannot and must not tolerate hate."

Colorado Springs Police identified a 22-year-old gunman as the suspect in the mass shooting at Club Q. At a press conference on Sunday, Chief Adrian Vasquez confirmed that "the suspect used a long rifle during the shooting" and that at least two firearms were found at the scene, as Insider reported.

A police car colorado
A police car is set up near a gay nightclub in Colorado Springs, Colo., Sunday, Nov. 20, 2022 where a shooting occurred late Saturday night.(AP Photo/Geneva Heffernan)

"Today, yet another community in America has been torn apart by gun violence. More families left with an empty chair at the table and hole in their lives that cannot be filled," Biden said. "When will we decide we've had enough? We must address the public health epidemic of gun violence in all of its forms."

The president added: "Earlier this year, I signed the most significant gun safety law in nearly three decades, in addition to taking other historic actions. But we must do more. We need to enact an assault weapons ban to get weapons of war off America's streets."

The White House's remarks came less than a day after the administration called on Congress to push the Respect for Marriage Act to ensure that LGBTQI+ couples "are respected and protected equally under federal law."

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