Biden calls for GOP help on gun violence, praises police for work in Maine shooting spree


WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden called on Republicans in Congress to help keep Americans safe from gun violence and praised police for their efforts to track down the Maine gunman who killed 18 people.

The Army reservist who opened fire in a bowling alley and then at a bar in Lewiston, Maine Wednesday night was found dead Friday from a self-inflicted gunshot. That ended an intensive two-day search for the gunman.

Biden said the shooting and anxious search for the gunman has been tragic “not just for Lewiston, Maine, but for our entire country.”

The shooting spree has been devastating for the families of those killed and injured, leaving “scores of family and friends praying and experiencing trauma no one ever wants to imagine,” he satd in a statement late Fridayl

He praised the police for their intense search over two days,

“Numerous brave law enforcement officers have worked around the clock to find this suspect and prevent the loss of more innocent life – all while risking their own. They are the best of us,” he said,

He thanked Maine Gov. Janet Mills for “her steady leadership during this time of crisis.” And he said his administration “would provide everything that is needed to support the people of Maine.”

And he asked for congressional help.

“Americans should not have to live like this,” he said. “I once again call on Republicans in Congress to fulfill their obligation to keep the American people safe. Until that day comes, I will continue to do everything in my power to end this gun violence epidemic. The Lewiston community – and all Americans – deserve nothing less.”

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