Los Angeles Mayor Karen Bass, L.A. County Supervisor Janice Hahn and Lunar New Year hero Brandon Tsay try to keep dry on the tarmac at LAX on Tuesday afternoon, as a Secret Service agent stands nearby. Photo: Christina Merino, SCNG
With rain soaking the tarmac and local dignitaries clustered under umbrellas, President Joe Biden arrived in Los Angeles and headed on his way to Monterey Park, where he will meet with those most impacted by the Jan. 21 mass shooting. The president will formally unveil an executive order that officials say will go as far as possible without Congressional legislation to encourage universal background checks on gun purchases.
Air Force One touched down at LAX at 12:28 p.m., where Biden was greeted by a delegation of local elected representatives, including L.A. Mayor Karen Bass, county Supervisor Janice Hahn and Brandon Tsay, the 26-year-old San Marino man hailed as a hero, who disarmed the Monterey Park gunman before another shooting could happen at a second dance studio.
President Biden greeting Tsay. pic.twitter.com/fIW9GQAvbS
— Christina Merino (@christinam_love) March 14, 2023
Biden lifted off for the San Gabriel Valley at 12:36 p.m. He is being flown by helicopter to Monterey Park, where he will meet with families and the owner of Star Ballroom Dance Studio, where amid the city’s Lunar New Year celebration, a gunman killed 11 people.
The massacre has shaken the city, known for its diversity, its culinary destinations and peace. While life has gotten back to some semblance of normal, the memory is still fresh and businesses continue to feel the impact of the tragedy as customers haven’t fully come back to the rattled city.
But as it emerges from the shooting, leaders are hopeful that the federal government will help bolster mental health resources and establish anti-violence reforms that reduce the chance of such a tragedy ever happening again.
The foul weather dampened any hope for a ceremony at the airport, and there was opportunity for media to ask questions as the president’s party scurried to get out of the rain after brief words with dignitaries. Unlike most LAX presidential arrivals, no members of the public came out to watch amid the deluge, which forecasters have been warning about for days.
The ceremonies in Monterey Park will be indoors, at the Boys and Girls Club, not far from the shooting site.
President Joe Biden is greeted on the soggy tarmac at LAX on Tuesday afternoon. Photo: Christina Merino, SCNG
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