Obama: ‘Executive Action’ on Gun Control ‘Within My Authority as President’

Fred Lucas | January 14, 2013 | 1:24pm EST
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President Barack Obama speaks about the debt limit in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Monday, Jan. 14, 2013. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

(CNSNews.com) – President Barack Obama said Monday he would take some unilateral executive action pertaining to gun control, following up on proposals that will be put forward by a group headed by Vice President Joe Biden.

After the school shooting in Newtown, Conn., in December, Obama named Vice President Joe Biden to lead a task force to present proposals for gun control. Biden, who met with House members on Monday about guns, has said he would give his recommendations to Obama by Tuesday.

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“My understanding is the vice president is going to provide a range of steps that we can do to prevent gun violence. Some of them will require legislation,” Obama said. “Some of them I can accomplish through executive action. And so I’ll be reviewing those today, and as I said, I’ll speak in more detail to what we’re going to go ahead and propose later in the week.”

“I am confident that there are some steps that we can take that don’t require legislation and that are within my authority as president and where get a step that has the possibility to reduce the possibility of gun violence, then I want to go ahead and take it,” Obama said.

Obama was asked what those measures might be.

“How we are gathering data, for example on guns that fall into the hands of criminals and how we track that more effectively,” the president responded. “There may be some steps that we can take administratively as opposed through legislation.”

The president’s call for better tracking comes after the Justice Department botched gun sting operation known as Operation Fast and Furious that sanctioned “gun walking,” or allowing nearly 2,000 guns to flow to Mexican drug trafficking organizations.

Obama was asked about the large number of gun sales occurring.

“As far as people lining up and purchasing more guns, I think that we’ve seen for some time now that those who oppose any common sense gun control or gun safety measures have a pretty effective way of ginning up fear on the part of gun owners that somehow the federal government’s about to take all your guns away,” Obama said.

“And there is probably an economic element to that. It obviously is good for business. But I think that those of us who look at this problem have repeatedly said that responsible gun owners – people who have a gun for protection, for hunting, for sportsmanship, they don’t have anything to worry about,” he said.

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