Biden says ‘we have to act’ after Texas school shooting

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WASHINGTON (AP) – President Joe Biden addressed the nation Tuesday night shortly after returning to the White House from a five-day trip to Asia that was bookended by “horrific” mass tragedy.

"To lose a child is like having a piece of your soul ripped away," Biden said.

The President was on Air Force One on Tuesday afternoon when officials said a gunman acting alone killed at least 18 students and a teacher at a Texas elementary school.

He had departed for Asia last week just two days after he met with victims’ families after a hate-motivated shooter killed 10 Black people at a Buffalo grocery store.

"As a nation, we have to ask, when in God’s name are we going to stand up to the gun lobby? When in God’s name will we do what we all know in our gut needs to be done?" Biden said.

The back-to-back tragedies served as a sobering reminder of the frequency and brutality of the American epidemic of mass gun violence.