'We Must Act': Warnock Addresses Atlanta Shooting on Senate Floor

Georgia Senator Raphael Warnock took to the floor of the US Senate on Wednesday, May 3, to address the mass shooting that took place in his home state earlier that day.

In an emotional speech, Warnock called for action on gun legislation. “Thoughts and prayers are not enough,” he said.

Earlier on Wednesday, a shooter opened fire at a medical facility in Atlanta, killing at least one and injuring four others. Credit: CSPAN via Storyful

Video transcript

RAPHAEL WARNOCK: Madam President, I rise today in shock and sorrow and in grief for my home state. And if I am honest, I rise really with a deep sense of anger about what is happening in our country in the area of gun violence and death.

I stood here in March of 2021, after a gunman went on a rampage across Metro Atlanta and snatched eight precious souls, people with families and friends who love them dear. And here I am standing again, this time with the tragedy having occurred in Midtown Atlanta, right in my own backyard.

And while this is still a developing situation according to media reports, so far, at least five people were shot-- five, on a random afternoon. And there's been one fatality, the others taken to the hospital.

I want to take a moment and thank law enforcement officials for keeping us as safe as they can. I want to thank them for their work trying to apprehend this individual. I'm also thankful for local media who are keeping all of us informed.

And I'm grateful for our first responders, the people in healthcare, the people on the front lines. We count on them every day to care for those who are injured, to respond to people in peril. And that's what makes this particular shooting ironic and deeply upsetting because it underscores the fact that none of us is safe, no matter where we are.

This happened in a medical facility, where people are trying to find healing. And so I want to underscore that because there have been so many mass shootings-- in fact, about one every day in this country this year-- that, tragically, we act as if this is routine.

We behave as if this is normal. It is not normal. It is not for us-- right for us to live in a nation where nobody is safe no matter where they are. We're not safe in our schools. We're not safe in our workplaces. We're not safe at the grocery store.

We're not safe at movie theaters. We're not safe at spas. We're not safe in our houses of worship. There is no sanctuary in the sanctuary. We're not safe at concerts. We're not safe at banks. We're not safe at parades. We're not safe in our own yards and in our own homes. And now, today, we can add medical facilities to that list.