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Rise in US gun violence forces Biden to take new measures

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
US police hand over asylum seekers to border patrol after they crossed the Rio Grande into the US on June 21, 2021 in La Joya, Texas. (Photo by AFP)

US President Joe Biden is set to take new measures to fight the increasing rate of violent crimes in the United States.

Biden is scheduled to announce his new anti-crime measures in a high profile address on Wednesday.

Too many Americans are dying every single day from gun violence. It stains our character and pierces the very soul of our nation,” Biden said in April, noting that gun violence had become an "epidemic" in the country. “We can, and must, do more to act and to save lives.”

Sources familiar with the issue said the president is likely going to highlight funding for law enforcement and Department of Justice initiatives to cut down on crime and violence.

Biden's move comes as a series of major US cities reported increases in violent crimes amid a rise in the national murder rate.

Murders across the United States rose from five murders per 100,000 people in 2019 to 6.2 per 100,000 in 2020, according to the FBI.

There has been an 18 percent increase in murders in 37 cities, the New York Times reported.

“A rising crime rate is always a practical challenge,” said William Galston, a senior fellow of governance studies at the Brookings Institution who served as a policy adviser during the tenure of former president Bill Clinton as cited by The Hill.

“I don't think anyone would have predicted six months ago how central it would become.... Along with immigration, it's not a problem the administration can ignore,” he said.

Galston added the upcoming midterm elections require the White House and congressional Democrats to pay special attention in addressing the issues.

General elections are scheduled for November 8, 2022. All 435 seats in the United States House of Representatives and 34 of the 100 seats in the United States Senate will be contested in the vote.

According to media estimates, there were fewer mass shootings in 2020 due the Americans' attention being fully focused on defeating the coronavirus that wreaked havoc in the country.

However, as more Americans are vaccinated and the disease comes under control, gun violence goes out of control with the same force and ferocity as before, pushing the demand for stringent measures by the White House against the US gun violence "epidemic".


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