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Remarks: Joe Biden Attends the National Peace Officers Memorial Service - May 15, 2024

  • Joe Biden
    Person
Very Positive

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:00:00-00:00:18 (19 sec)
President Yoes, Auxiliary President Hennie, Auxiliary President Lehmann, Executive Director and good friend Jimmy Pasco, thank you for your service to our nation and for inviting me to join you once again today. 1

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:00:18-00:00:34 (16 sec)
I'd also like to thank the Attorney General and Deputy Attorney General Monaco and -- as well the deputy of -- the Homeland Security Secretary Mayorkas; and the Director of the FBI; Secret Service; Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms; the U.S. Marshals Service; and the U.S. Capitol Police for their leadership. 2

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:00:34-00:00:43 (8 sec)
We're also joined by my good friend, Wade Carpenter, president of the Chiefs of Police, and Ed Kelly, president of the firefighters' union. 3

Joe Biden

Somewhat Positive
00:00:43-00:00:47 (4 sec)
And thank you, members of the Congress who are here today. 4

Joe Biden

Somewhat Negative
00:00:47-00:01:07 (20 sec)
Two weeks ago, I was in Charlotte, North Carolina, to spend some time with the families of the eight brave police officers who were shot in the line of duty. Tragically, four of them were killed. They were husbands, fathers, heroes. 5

Joe Biden

Slightly Negative
00:01:07-00:01:33 (25 sec)
And all of you who serve and for your families left behind, you live a cho- -- a simple truth: Every time you put on that shield and walk out of the house, your family wonders if that call will come or if they'll get that terrible call somewhere during the day or night. We owe you as a nation. 6

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:01:33-00:01:42 (10 sec)
This year, we honor ov- -- over 200 heroic women and men from all across the law enforcement community who made the ultimate sacrifice. 7

Joe Biden

Negative
00:01:42-00:02:05 (23 sec)
For all the families of our fallen officers, I know hearing the name of your husband, wife, father, mother, son or daughter, brother or sister brings it all back as if you got that news just 10 minutes ago. That black hole in the middle of your chest -- you feel like you're being sucked into. It's like losing part of your soul. 8

Joe Biden

Very Negative
00:02:05-00:02:43 (38 sec)
I know. When my son Beau spent a year in Iraq, he came home with stage four glioblastoma and was going to die, and he did. I know what it's like. I get a feeling that you all know, as well, who have lost in the past. You know, I found out there is only one thing -- at least for me, when my -- got the call that my wife and daughter were dead; when I got the call my son was about to die -- I know the only one thing that helped: family. 9

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:02:43-00:03:07 (24 sec)
If you have family, hold them tight. Hold on to each other, because the day will come -- it's hard to believe -- when the thought of your husband or your wife or your son or your daughter will bring a smile to your lips before it brings a tear to your eye. It takes a long time, but it will come. My wish for you: It'll come sooner than later. 10

Joe Biden

Unknown
00:03:07-00:03:22 (15 sec)
There is a line from the English poet John Milton. He said, "They also serve who only stand and wait." Every family of an officer stands and waits so their loved one can serve the rest of us. 11

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:03:22-00:03:44 (21 sec)
I admire your courage in being here. And I hope you take comfort in the knowledge that their sacrifice will never be forgotten and then, in this extended family of women and men assembled here today, who will always be there for you -- other police officers, they'll always be there for you. 12

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:03:44-00:04:00 (17 sec)
Throughout my career, I've unfortunately spoken at too many funerals of too many police officers -- extraordinary, brave, heroic public servants who kept us safe. Being a police officer is not just what you do; it's who you are. 13

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:04:00-00:04:26 (26 sec)
You're just like all the women and men in law enforcement I grew up with in Scranton and Claymont, Delaware. You always run toward danger as others run away from it. Most of you, even when you were kids, you did it, long before you became an officer. You run toward the cries for help knowing that you could be of help. It's part of your DNA to serve, to protect, to defend. 14

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:04:26-00:04:33 (6 sec)
You represent the very best of America. You're the steel spine of this country. 15

Joe Biden

Somewhat Positive
00:04:33-00:04:43 (10 sec)
Back in February, I convened a group of police chiefs at the White House to talk about the hard work you're doing to make our communities safer. 16

Joe Biden

Very Negative
00:04:43-00:05:05 (22 sec)
Being a cop is one hell of a lot harder than it's ever been. We expect everything of you. We expect everyone -- drug counselors, you're supposed to be, protecting people who are overdosing; social workers to kids who have been abandoned; guardians in communities flooded with weapons of fear. 17

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:05:05-00:05:16 (11 sec)
That's why, since day one of my presidency, I've been working to make sure you have the tools you need to protect, the partners you need, and the community to help. 18

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:05:16-00:05:37 (21 sec)
During the pandemic, I signed the American Rescue Plan that provided $350 billion to states and cities that they could use to keep communities safe, retain and hire more police officers, pay overtime and bonuses, expand benefits for disabled first responders, and support [DEL: violent :DEL] [violence] prevention strategies. 19

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:05:37-00:05:47 (9 sec)
Places like Detroit, Toledo, Kansas City, Houston put more cops on the beat. It was one of the largest federal investments ever made in public safety. 20

Joe Biden

Very Negative
00:05:47-00:06:05 (19 sec)
I also signed the most sweeping gun safety law in nearly 30 years to keep guns out of the hands of dangerous individuals, while strengthening background checks and -- for gun purchases, cracking down on illegal gun sales, reining in "ghost guns" that are increasingly found at crime scenes. 21

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:06:05-00:06:18 (13 sec)
My Safer America Plan invests $37 billion in public safety to hire many more police officers trained in community policing, to build trust, to solve crimes faster. 22

Joe Biden

Positive
00:06:18-00:06:27 (9 sec)
I'm grateful for the partnership of Jim and the other law enforcement officers that we worked together on my executive order on policing. 23

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:06:27-00:06:42 (15 sec)
My Safer America Plan also makes investments to support programs that are proven to tackle the root causes of crime, to ensure you have the psychologists and the social workers responding to crises alongside you. 24

Joe Biden

Very Negative
00:06:42-00:07:04 (22 sec)
We also know that police officers deal with unbelievable stress. Every time you respond to a call, execute a warrant, or conduct a traffic [DEL: spot :DEL] [stop], there's a tremendous risk: fear of ambush, anxiety of not knowing what's behind that door, the trauma of bearing witness to the most horrible tragedies imaginable. 25

Joe Biden

Positive
00:07:04-00:07:12 (8 sec)
That's why our administration is laser-focused on providing you with the mental health and wellness resources you need and deserve. 26

Joe Biden

Leans Negative
00:07:12-00:07:29 (17 sec)
That's why I also signed extended benefits for families of officers who tragically died by suicide -- honoring Capitol Police officers like Howard Liebengood, who defended the Capitol on January 6th, whose dad I knew well when he served as Sergeant at Arms in the United States Senate. 27

Joe Biden

Negative
00:07:29-00:07:36 (7 sec)
We remember all our law enforcements who defend this Capitol and our democracy on that terrible day. 28

Joe Biden

Somewhat Negative
00:07:36-00:07:47 (11 sec)
And Congress should also pass the Honoring Fallen Heroes Act that extends benefits to first responders who are exposed to toxic substances and die of cancer. 29

Joe Biden

Positive
00:07:47-00:07:58 (11 sec)
I know so many of you still carry the physical and invisible wounds of your service. We can never thank you enough for your courage, your service, and your sacrifice. 30

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:07:58-00:08:08 (10 sec)
You risk your lives every day for the safety of the people you don't even know. That's why each of you, each and every one of you, is a hero. 31

Joe Biden

Very Negative
00:08:08-00:08:27 (19 sec)
It's no accident that violent crime is near a record 50-year low -- a 50-year low. It's because of extraordinary efforts by all of you in your communities, together with historic steps taken to support you -- to stop the flow of illegal guns, to hold gun traffickers accountable for crimes. 32

Joe Biden

Neutral
00:08:27-00:08:30 (4 sec)
It matters, and it matters a lot. 33

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:08:30-00:08:42 (12 sec)
I often say: There is no greater responsibility of government than ensuring the safety of the American people and those who sacrifice to protect us all. 34

Joe Biden

Slightly Positive
00:08:42-00:08:46 (4 sec)
We've made a lot of progress, but there's still much more to be done. 35

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:08:46-00:09:04 (18 sec)
Let me close. To the families here today, my wife and I know how hard it is in different ways, but I promise you the day will come again when the memory of your loved one will bring a smile to your lips before it brings a tear to your eye. It may take a couple seasons, but it will come. 36

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:09:04-00:09:13 (8 sec)
And I hope you always remember one thing that is never fully lost: your love for them and their love for you. 37

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:09:13-00:09:22 (9 sec)
God bless you all. May God protect law enforcement. And may God protect our troops. [Applause] 38