HARTFORD, Conn. (CBSNewYork/AP) — President Barack Obama was in Hartford on Monday, trying to boost the chances of gun legislation that could be in jeopardy this week in Washington.
Following the president’s address, the families of the Sandy Hook Elementary School victims stepped off Air Force One at Andrews Air Force base, ready to rally lawmakers at the U.S. Capitol, CBS 2’s Jessica Schneider reported.READ MORE: Gov. Kathy Hochul Announces Green Energy Initiative In Upstate New York
They flew with President Obama from Connecticut to Washington, where they will make their case to Congress this week.
Earlier in the day, Nicole Hockley, the mother of Sandy Hook victim Dylan Hockley, introduced Obama in Hartford.
“If you want to protect your children, you will not turn away either,” Hockley said. “Do something before our tragedy becomes your tragedy.”
She added, “What law-abiding citizen — whether they are a gun owner or not — doesn’t want to address this and save lives?”
“Connecticut has shown the way, and now is the time for Congress to do the same,” Obama said, speaking at the University of Hartford.
The president said “we can’t forget” the tragedy of the Newtown massacre last December that left 26 dead. Obama also applauded parents of victims, who he said “used the grief to make a difference.”
“Newtown, we want you to know that we’re here with you. We will not walk away from the promises we’ve made. We are determined as ever to do what must be done,” Obama said.
‘”We can pass common sense laws to protect our kids and protect our rights,” Obama added.
Obama made the case in Hartford the same day Congress headed back to work. The U.S. Senate was expected to debate tighter gun regulations later in the week.
“We have to tell Congress it’s time to require a background check for anyone who wants to buy a gun so the people who are dangerous to themselves and others cannot get their hands on a gun,” Obama said. “Let’s make that happen.”
The president argued that lawmakers have an obligation to the children killed and other victims of gun violence to act on his proposals.