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Michelle Kraus Headshot

Hope and Change Rise From the Ashes of Sandy Hook

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Killing children broke something fundamental in our culture. Babies and guns do not belong in the same sentence. Guns must never again be used to kill children. Many have asked if we have waited too long for action, the answer is simply no. The slaughter of children sparked an unprecedented opening for change in this country.

It is that opening, that gaping wound, which is inspiring our President Obama and Vice President Biden. This unlikely duo appear to be fueled by the fire of what is possible, and are driving a Mack truck through this opening -- whether it is to push through the broadest gun safety legislation; or enact comprehensive immigration reform; or to raise the minimum wage; or end violence toward women; or to support gay marriage.

Watching our President Obama the evening of the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School - it was clear that he would leap tall buildings to save the children and people of this country. For him and his pal Joe, it had become a Holy Crusade. Compromise was off the table on all fronts. Just witness the fervor with which this team is working to move their Cabinet nominations forward, even for beleaguered Secretary of Defense, Chuck Hagel.

Republican shenanigans are not being tolerated even on their home turf, the House of Representatives, or in the White House. These folks can rant and rave for the cameras (and they do), but their rhetoric is falling flat with no runway. No kidding, that the President's approval ratings are soaring even in the shadow of the latest, manufactured financial machination of the 'sequester.' And it is this fundamental lack of empathy, insight and understanding that may be the down fall of the Republican Party as we know it today.

Thank goodness, the President is done turning himself into a human pretzel, and for this we must rejoice. You just can't compromise with folks that hate you and all that you stand for. It's a travesty that it took this horrific loss of lives in Sandy Hook to galvanize the American people - but it did. Unbelievably, today one child still "dies every three hours from gun violence in the United States." Everyone knows that gun safety legislation is not about the Second Amendment, but rather about sustaining a modern civilization. Just witness the President's news conference Friday on the impasse over what is called sequestration. He's not backing down now or ever.