"We have to speak for those 20 beautiful children who died 69 days ago, 12 miles from here," he said, a reference to those killed in the shooting at a Newtown, Conn. elementary school Dec. 14.
Biden said he met with two parents of the children before taking the stage, and said of them, "You have a hell of a lot more courage than I do."
Referring to his colleagues in politics, he added, "If you are concerned about your political survival, you should be concerned about the survival of our children," noting "There's a moral price to pay for inaction. I can't imagine who we will be judged as a society if we do nothing."
The daylong conference Thursday, organized by Sen. Richard Blumenthal, Sen. Chris Murphy and Rep. Elizabeth Esty, also heard from U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, Bridgeport, Conn., mayor Bill Finch, Newtown First Selectwoman Pat Llodra, and Connecticut State Police Capt. Dale Hourigan, the Hartford, Conn. Courant reported Thursday.
Hourigan explained the horror of arriving at Sandy Hook Elementary School and said, "It's our hope as law enforcement officers that as a result our laws are strengthened."