Parkland Dad Interrupts President Biden at Gun Violence Event

Manuel Oliver, who lost his son Joaquin in the Feb. 14, 2018 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, was in the audience outside the White House

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The father of a Parkland school shooting victim interrupted President Joe Biden on the White House lawn Monday during an event meant to celebrate a new law aimed at reducing gun violence.

Manuel Oliver, who lost his son, Joaquin, in the Feb. 14, 2018, shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, was in the audience outside the White House as Biden spoke from a podium.

"Today is many things. It's proof that despite the naysayers, we can make meaningful progress on dealing with gun violence. Because make no mistake..." Biden said when he was interrupted by Oliver.

"We have to do more than that," Oliver yelled from the audience.

Footage shows Oliver standing and shouting to Biden, who told him to "sit down, you'll hear what I have to say," adding "let me finish my comments."

Oliver then appeared to be escorted from his seat.

The new law, passed after recent mass shootings in Buffalo, New York, and Uvalde, Texas, incrementally toughens requirements for young people buying guns, denies firearms to more domestic abusers and helps local authorities temporarily take weapons from people judged to be dangerous.

But the White House event, billed as a celebration of the law, came a week after a gunman in Highland Park, Illinois, killed seven people at an Independence Day parade, a stark reminder of the limitations of the new law in addressing the American phenomenon of mass gun violence.

Oliver spoke with NBC 6 from the White House lawn before the event, saying the law doesn't go far enough.

NBC 6's Ari Odzer spoke with Manuel Oliver has he attended the White House event on Monday after the passage of a bi-partisan bill aimed at helping to curb gun violence.

"It's not enough — we need to keep on putting pressure so they do more," Oliver said.

Oliver's spokesperson, J.P. Hervis, told NBC News that Oliver never thought the event should be a celebration and that it would allow Republicans to claim they had taken action to address gun violence and avoid additional change.

Ahead of the White House event, Oliver tweeted, "The word CELEBRATION has no space in a society that saw 19 kids massacred just a month ago."

Earlier this year, Oliver climbed a 150-foot crane near the White House to mark four years since the Parkland shooting and to bring awareness to gun violence.

Copyright NBC / Associated Press
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