Biden Signs Executive Order Strengthening Gun Background Checks
Do you support expanding firearm background checks?
What's the story?
- President Joe Biden has signed an executive order that mandates required background checks for all firearm sales and cracks down on sellers who break the law.
- Biden signed the order in Monterey Park, California, the scene of a mass shooting in January that left eleven people dead.
“Every few days in the United States, we mourn a new mass shooting," Biden said in the order. "We cannot accept these facts as the enduring reality of life in America,” the order said. “Instead, we must together insist that we have had enough.”
- His executive order does not require the approval of Congress and does not change government policy, it merely enables Biden to take action within his authority as president.
- The president cannot unilaterally enhance the Safer Communities Act, a piece of bipartisan legislation passed by Congress after the Uvalde and Buffalo shootings. However, his order can empower federal agencies to ensure compliance with existing laws.
- Biden has been growing more vocal about his anti-gun stance, saying to Congress:
"Ban assault weapons once and for all.”
“Too many lives have been taken by gun violence. But he believes we need to do more. You’ll hear him call on Congress to take action and not to stop ... that we need to continue.”
What will the executive order do?
- Tasks Merrick Garland, the attorney general, with moving the country "as close to universal background checks as possible." The AG is ordered to establish a system of preventing sellers who have previously had their licenses revoked from continuing to sell guns. The order also makes the identities of firearms dealers who violate the law accessible to the public.
- Clarifies the necessity of universal background checks, which allow a gun buyer's information to be run through an FBI database prior to purchase.
- Focuses on establishing a federal method for dealing with the short- and long-term needs of communities impacted by gun violence.
- Promotes the extreme risk protection orders, known as "red flag" laws, that are currently active in nineteen states and the District of Columbia. Red flag laws allow individuals to petition a court to temporarily confiscate guns from people who pose a danger to themselves or others.
- Directs the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to issue a report on how gun manufacturers advertise and market to minors.
- Directs the Department Of Justice and the Secretary of Transportation to create a plan to reduce the number of firearms that are lost or stolen during shipping.
- Mandates more organized reporting of ballistics data so law enforcement can cross-reference shell casings to guns.
- Seeks to raise public awareness of firearm storage best practices.
A divisive issue
- The executive order comes at a time when partisan divisions in Washington make action on gun control a slow and divisive process.
- As long as Republicans control the U.S. House of Representatives, it is unlikely that Biden's goal of an assault weapons ban and universal background check will pass.
- Biden wants to repeal the immunity from prosecution that gun manufacturers currently enjoy.
- The president signed a gun violence reduction measure into law last year but urged Congress to do more to address the "epidemic" of gun violence.
- Legislation that requires criminal background checks for gun sales has not had broad support in the Senate and has been rejected by both Democrats and Republicans.
Support for the order
The Everytown gun control coalition said:
"[It] would improve community safety, hold the gun industry and rogue gun dealers in our communities accountable, and save lives."
Kris Brown, president of gun control non-profit Brady, said:
"While we still need urgent legislative action from Congress, [the president's] announcement today gets us closer to universal background checks than any other President that has come before."
Is the government doing enough to prevent gun violence?
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Not only do we need to increase the strictness of background checks, we need to reduce the number of guns, period. The leading cause of death for children is not books, it is not bathrooms, it is not drag story hours, it is guns! Let's deal with the real problems and not the straw man problems.
As the owner of a few weapons, I wholeheartedly support more comprehensive background checks, well-enforced Red Flag Laws, and keeping guns out of the hands of the mentally and emotionally challenged.
We have passed so many background check Bills and still children and folks are getting killed. 1/10 of the military budget for mental health care might be the answer to stop the mass shootings. But to keep passing Bills with no teeth is careless. Just appeasing those that just hate guns. Example California has some of the strongest background laws in affect, but still have their share of mass shootings.
In lieu of any meaningful Congressional legislation an Executive Order to try to get something done that I'm sure will face all sorts of court challenges from the well funded NRA, Federalist Siciety, etc.
It is beyond belief to think that anyone, anywhere would be against back ground checks to purchase any sort of firearm. Absolute lunacy.
There he goes again with another Presidential Order. Congress had just recently passed a law that would help reduce gun violence and mass shootings with bipartisan support.
Why the second amendment crowd don't want to give an inch is then the democrats try to take a mile.
I think we all want background checks but not a national registry.
When a timely background check is made and the applicant fails the FBI need to visit the residence with a warrant to verify that the applicant doesn't have any weapons.
Most firearms owners are trained to use the weapons and don't break the law. If a gun is used in the commission of a crime then it should be a federal offense and the government should handle the case and if the penalty is five years for the crime then it double for using any weapon. So for using a gun it is now ten years without parole, and no down grading of the charge.
In other words if you use a gun in your crime or have one on you even if you didn't use it your crime won't be reduced and you will be going to a federal prison without parole.
I, like all decent people, support better background checks for gun ownership and other common sense gun control measures that we need to protect children and other innocent people against the evil people who are terrorizing our country. And mentally healthy, law abiding people who own guns welcome these kinds of laws!
I support Biden's proposal for Background checks to buy firearms.
Definitely support it, but I would venture to say go back to the original Texas gun regulation way back years ago. At that time, to have a gun, one must register, take a 3-day class - learn how to dismantle and put the gun back on, practice target shooting, make note of the line of sight, and all that plus 1/2 day in anger management. After all that, wait a month for background checks before finally being permitted to have a gun.
That is what I went thru. And, get this, I was glad to do it because I know the other owners of guns are for the most part safe as they took classes.
Abbot removed that and now we have many, many children killed as well as many, many adults.
Doing background checks only makes sense.
There has been too many people who are too young or felons or have other things on their records that should never have been allowed to buy guns, which were used to kill children and adults. Too many mass shootings and too much hate going around.
I totally support this. This country has too many batshit crazy nutjobs with guns. Too many children have been slaughtered by these nutjobs! What's wrong with this picture? Why are gun owners so against this? What if their child gets slaughtered by a gun toting nutjob? Is that what it will take? Seriously?! It's way past time for control!!!
Guns are dangerous unregulated
Background checks has bipartisan support from Democrats and Republicans voters
There are enough laws on the books. The force the laws already in place.
This AND MORE!!
Ban all assault weapons
Require gun safety training
Raise purchase age
List all congress members that oppose gun control
List names of Congress that have received NRA money
Charge the purchaser of the gun used as well as the user in a crime
If any one under 21 carries a weapon to school or commits a crime charge their parents or care giver.
Why would anyone who opposes school, family or criminal gun violence oppose background checks to remove guns from those who have shown they have no business possessing them?
This is a step in the right direction but we need to do more. Bring back the ban on assault weapons that expired.
Of course I support stronger background checks! Talk about comonsense actions to decrease the number of children and individuals killed senselessly by guns owned by people who should not own them. A kid who's parents didn't lock up their own gun and didn't mind him taking it to school in his backpack. A quote disgruntled unquote ex-employee who confesses to murdering his ex colleagues. A teenager who brings a long-gun to a protest, kills someone, and is told to "go home'; by white police. None of these people--and so many others--should have been able to buy a gun. How many of the latest mass killings have involved someone buying a gun the day of their murderous spree? All of them need to be prevented from buying a gun while the gun seller checked their backgrounds.We need background checks desperately--and SO much more. You know, an assault-weapon ban would be perfect for spring.
Make sure that these people are members of a well-run militia and all the weapons are circa 1776...
I'm not be facetious. I'm pointingout that the idea that an amendment to the U.S. Constitution in 1784 forces us to allow any type of gun for anyone is utterly ridiculous
There ia already a process for background checks, what is needed is a legal frsmework for reporting mental health issues into a data base and a way for families to start a mental health evaluation of a family member.
Sto] Killing our children in the name of profits
Any action that we can take that will keep guns out of the hands of folks who potentially pose a threat to their communities it a good thing.
It should not have taken this long to figure out.
If the power wielded by lobbyists could be curtailed that would also help in this endeavor. When politcians are afraid to buck the gun lobby that is a very bad situation for our nation.