Overall, the congressional response to tonight's SOTU address played out strictly on party lines. The longest shared applause was when President Obama directed the room's attention towards the parents of slain teenager, Hadiya Pendleton. The moment of consolidated support for grieving parents faded quickly as Obama connected them with Gabby Giffords, and the familes of many communities hurt by gun violence (e.g. Newtown, Aurora, Oak Creek, Tucson, and Blacksburg). This personalization and the grim fact that 1000 lives have been lost to gun violence in the U.S. since the Newtown massacre culminated in a rousing plea for Congress to move gun violence prevention measures to a vote.
Obama's call to action was that the lives lost and families and communities around them "deserve a simple vote".