Once again, since Congress won’t give dictatorial Obama what he wants, he will just take it.
A man who is willing to violate the Second Amendment is obviously not going to have any respect for the separation of powers, so Barack Obama plans to restrict guns all by himself. In doing so, he is not just going to war against Congress and the Constitution, but against American society in general, which clearly prefers that the government stay out of the way.
According to the Washington Post, “Obama weighs expanding background checks through executive authority.”
In response to the latest mass shooting during his presidency, President Obama is seriously considering circumventing Congress with his executive authority and imposing new background-check requirements for buyers who purchase weapons from high-volume gun dealers.
Under the proposed rule change, dealers who exceed a certain number of sales each year would be required to obtain a license from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and perform background checks on potential buyers.
As the president heads to Roseburg, Ore., on Friday to comfort the survivors and families of those killed in last week’s mass shooting at Umpqua Community College, the political calculus around his most vexing domestic policy issue is shifting once again.
After the Dec. 14, 2012, shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., claimed the lives of 20 students and six staff members, Obama asked Vice President Biden to devise a list of policy proposals in response, and on Jan. 26, 2013, the president announced 23 executive actions ranging from restarting federal research into the causes of gun violence to providing parity for mental health coverage under private insurance plans. He pushed for legislation mandating universal background checks on gun sales, an effort that failed in the Senate in April 2013. In August that year, Obama closed two gun-sale loopholes through executive authority, subjecting gun purchases by corporations and trusts to background checks and banning almost all re-imports of military surplus firearms to private entities.
In the wake of last week’s tragedy, Obama said he had asked his team “to scrub what kinds of authorities do we have to enforce the laws that we have in place more effectively to keep guns out of the hands of criminals.”
“We are hopeful we can find a way to do this,” said one senior administration official, who noted that lawyers were still working through details to ensure that the rule could pass legal muster. “It’s a lot more clear today than it was a year ago how to work this out.”
The rule is not going “to keep guns out of the hands of criminals,” but out of the hands of potential victims. While it may make guns slightly more expensive and harder to get, the fact remains that criminals are as likely to not take up arms as they are to stop using drugs because those are illegal. Innocent people, however, will be more restricted from having a firearm, and will thus be more vulnerable to criminals, whether the criminals are carrying firearms or not.