White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki confirmed this week that President Biden has not ruled out using executive action to implement his gun control agenda.
Asked during Tuesday’s press briefing whether the administration was still considering bypassing congress to force actions on guns, Psaki said Biden has a “range of actions at his disposal,” and added that he “hasn’t ruled out” using executive power to address the issue.
“The president is somebody throughout his career who has advocated for smart gun safety measures,” Psaki said.
She suggested that the only opposition to such a brazen constitutional abuse might come from lobbying groups, such as the National Rifle Association, but that Biden “was not afraid” of taking on the NRA.
“He’s done it multiple times and won on background checks and a range of issues,” Psaki said. “And it is a priority to him on a personal level, but I don’t have a prediction for you, or preview for you on a timeline of a package, and certainly not what it will look like and how it goes through Congress.”
Psaki’s comments followed a meeting between gun-control group leaders and top White House officials last week. The gun-control group leaders reportedly left the meeting “feeling confident” that Biden would push their agenda.
“We are pleased that the administration recognizes the gravity of this issue and look forward to continued discussion with and actions by the administration to begin confronting the ever-present threat of gun violence that claims over 100 lives a day,” Kris Brown, the president of anti-gun group Brady, said in a statement after the meeting.
Biden made gun control a major theme of his campaign and issued a statement last week urging Congress to pass a “common-sense” gun control package. For him, that would include the outright ban of “assault”-style weapons, or any semi-automatic weapons with moderate- to high-capacity magazine clips.
“Today, I am calling on Congress to enact commonsense gun law reforms, including requiring background checks on all gun sales, banning assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, and eliminating immunity for gun manufacturers who knowingly put weapons of war on our streets,” he said.