President Obama appointed Vice President Joe Biden to head a panel to look into methods to prevent gun violence in the wake of the Sandy Hook tragedy. Biden stated that Obama is considering using executive orders to change gun laws.
“The president is going to act,” Mr. Biden said. “There are executive orders, executive action that can be taken. We haven’t decided what that is yet, but we’re compiling it all.”
President Obama is spoiling for a fight over gun control if he attempts to implement restrictive gun laws via executive order, bypassing congressional legislation.
Executive orders are presidential policy directives usually used as management tools to expedite the operation of the federal government. However they can and have been used by presidents of both parties to establish political policies without debate since they do not require congressional approval. In fact they become law simply upon their publication in the Federal Registry.
There have been problematic executive orders issued by presidents throughout the years. Abraham Lincoln suspended the writ of habeas corpus during the civil war. FDR issued an EO that sent Japanese-Americans into internment camps during WWII. Truman seized the steel mills during the Korean War and George W. Bush ordered secret wiretapping of U.S. citizens following 9/11.
President Obama has issued his share of executive orders but contrary to an email circulating on the internet he has not issued over 900. He has, in fact, issued only 147, in line with the numbers issued by recent former presidents. In fact President Obama’s EO 13490, his second, fulfilled one of his campaign promises; to limit the influence of lobbyists in government, a good thing.
However, the use of executive orders for political purposes is impermissible despite presidential efforts to the contrary. Executive orders cannot be used when they challenge the separation of powers, the system of checks and balances between the branches of government.
In the case of the prevention of gun violence reasonable changes can be made legislatively without the use of executive orders. A previous article here outlined solutions. It is worth a read.
Reasonable is the operative word. Most folks do not even know what an "assault" weapon is and that is a purposeful deception on the part of the Left. To the general public an "assault" weapon is a high-powered, fully-automatic machine gun. The Left is happy to allow this misconception to linger since it fits right into their plans of keeping guns out of the hands of even law abiding citizens.
Make no mistake. The ultimate end of the Left’s gun policy is no gun in the hands of any citizen. To that end they will make incremental steps in that direction. The real purpose of registering guns (and now bullets) is, ultimately, government confiscation of all civilian weapons.
New York’s Governor Cuomo went on a rant last week at his State of the State speech (kicking off his 2016 presidential campaign) with this: “No one hunts with an assault rifle. No one needs 10 bullets to kill a deer,” he trumpeted. “End the madness now!”
The phrase “home invasion” means nothing to Cuomo. He is safely ensconced in the Governor’s mansion surrounded by fully-armed body guards. So is the President and his family but they will not allow the same protection for average citizens. Such protection can only be provided by citizens arming themselves.
Since the outcry against guns escalated in recent weeks NRA membership has increased by 100,000. The FBI has reported a record 2.8 million background checks in December 2012, up 49% over 2011. Americans want their guns now more than ever.
Guns in the hands of ordinary citizens serve many functions. Any attempt to take them away by executive order, even if upheld by the courts, will result in a fight Obama will wish he had not begun.
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