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Biden talks stricter gun laws during Thanksgiving trek to Nantucket

Biden talks stricter gun laws during Thanksgiving trek to Nantucket
Biden talks stricter gun laws during Thanksgiving trek to Nantucket 01:52

President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden are spending Thanksgiving on Nantucket with other members of their extended family, as per their family's tradition.

The Bidens, along with their two-year-old grandson Beau, visited firefighters at a Nantucket firehouse to thank them for their hard work. The White House said they called service members from each branch of our military who are stationed around the world. 

Mr. Biden spoke briefly to reporters at the firehouse, saying, "I'm sick and tired of these shootings" when asked about the Virginia Walmart shooting. He called for stricter gun laws and said "I'm going to try" when asked if he would try to pass gun legislation before Republicans take control of the House of Representatives in January.

"I'm going to do it whenever — I got to make that assessment as I get in and start counting the votes," Mr. Biden said. 

The Bidens also called the owners of Club Q, the site of a shooting Saturday night that left five dead in Colorado Springs. The White House said the Bidens reiterated their support for the community as well as their commitment to fighting back against hate and gun violence.

When asked if he would soon take a physical, Mr. Biden laughed and said, "What, do you think I need it?"

Mr. Biden and the first lady earlier called in NBC's Dylan Dreyer while she was on air for the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade in New York. Mr. Biden said he was thankful for emergency responders.

The first lady said they were planning on having dinner and then taking a walk on the beach.

First Lady Jill Biden, left, walks with her grandson Beau Biden, and President Joe Biden, following a visit with firefighters on Thanksgiving Day at the Nantucket Fire Department in Nantucket, Mass., Thursday, Nov. 24, 2022. Susan Walsh / AP

The Bidens' granddaughter Naomi, the daughter of Hunter Biden and ex-wife Kathleen Buhle, was married last week at the White House.

According to Jill Biden's memoir "Where the Light Enters," the Bidens began vacationing on Nantucket at Thanksgiving when they were first dating. She wrote that Mr. Biden's then-chief of staff suggested Nantucket, and they stayed in one of the cottages on the water.

"Nantucket Thanksgiving became our tradition for the next four decades," Jill wrote. "With a few exceptions, we've made the trek every year since, creating rituals that would become a key part of our family along the way."

In fact, the Bidens' late son Beau Biden proposed to his wife Hallie at the annual Nantucket tree lighting in 2001, and they were married at St. Mary's Church in downtown Nantucket. 

Jill Biden wrote that the family skipped Nantucket in 2015, the first Thanksgiving after Beau died. But she said the following year, their grandchildren asked to return to Nantucket.

"Thanksgiving was Nantucket," she wrote. "They missed the little shops, the ice cream parlor we always visited, the traditional Friday lunch. They wanted to watch the Christmas tree lighting and wander the cobblestone streets. They wanted to be together. To feel normal again.

According to Mr. Biden's memoir, "Promise Me, Dad," Nantucket is where Beau and younger son Hunter in 2014 told him to run for president. "'Dad, you've got to run,'" Mr. Biden wrote that Beau told him and he wrote that Hunter said "'We want you to run.'"  

Mr. Biden opted not to run for president in 2016 due to Beau's battle with brain cancer. Beau Biden died in May 2015

Mr. Biden has not yet said if he is running for president in 2024, telling "60 Minutes" in September that it is his "intention" to run again. " "But it's just an intention," Mr. Biden said. "But is it a firm decision that I run again? That remains to be seen."

Former President Donald Trump, who Mr. Biden defeated in 2020, announced last week that he would be running for president in 2024

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