Senate votes to make Pulse nightclub national memorial

ORLANDO, Fla. — The Senate on Wednesday voted to designate the Pulse nightclub in Central Florida as a national memorial, nearly five years after 49 people were killed at the Orlando nightspot.

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The House passed the bill, sponsored by Reps. Val Demings, Darren Soto and Stephanie Murphy, last month. All three represent districts in Central Florida.

Now that the Senate approved the measure by voice vote, it goes to President Joe Biden’s desk.

The bill notes that the site shall not require or allow federal funds to be used for any purpose related to the site.

On June 12, 2016, a gunman killed 49 people and injured 68 others, according to the Orange County Board of County Commissioners’ website. The early morning shooting is considered the second deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history, topped only by a shooting in the parking lot of a Las Vegas casino during the Route 91 Harvest country music festival in 2017 that claimed 59 lives, The Washington Post reported.

The shooting in Orlando also marked the deadliest incident of violence against the LGBTQ community in modern U.S. history.

The gunman was identified as 29-year-old Omar Mir Seddique Mateen, NPR reported. He was killed in a shootout with Orlando police, who converged on the nightclub.

“The memorial will serve as a national symbol of hope, love, and unity,” Demings tweeted.

The Senate also passed a resolution honoring the “memory of the victims of the heinous attack at the Pulse nightclub.”

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