The White House released Monday some details of a 10-measure plan that President Barack Obama will propose in a Tuesday address to tackle the issue of gun violence in the U.S. after a year of high-profile shooting across the country that left hundreds dead.
Among other things, the plan – to be implemented using the president’s executive authority – will close some loopholes that allow guns to be sold without a criminal background check on the purchaser.
— The White House (@WhiteHouse) January 4, 2016
U.S. state authorities will also be required to provide information on people who could be disqualified from owning firearms due to mental illness or a history of domestic violence. The Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) is set to increase its workforce processing background checks by 50 percent, hiring more than 230 new examiners.
The White House also said Obama is planning to ask the U.S. Congress, currently controlled by Republicans who oppose new controls on guns, to invest US$500 million to address mental healthcare issues.
The U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives will also introduce a rule to ensure that dealers who ship firearms notify law enforcement if their guns are lost or stolen in transit.
— Russell Simmons (@UncleRUSH) January 5, 2016
The early details by the White House came shortly after Obama addressed reporters in Washington, saying the plan is “well within my legal authority and the executive branch” and in accordance with the wishes of “the overwhelming majority of the American people, including gun owners.”
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Obama’s remarks came after he met with U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch, FBI Director James Comey and other top law enforcement officials.
Conservatives are skeptical, with Republican senator and presidential candidate Rand Paul saying he would fight the executive actions “tooth and nail.”
— Linda Sarsour (@lsarsour) January 5, 2016
Obama acknowledged, however, that his proposed measures will not solve the problem of gun violence in the U.S. “It’s not going to prevent every mass shooting,” he said, but it will “potentially save lives in this country and spare families … pain and extraordinary loss.”
High-profile shootings in 2015 revived a nationwide conversation about gun control. There have been more than 350 mass shooting in the U.S last year, according to an online tracker.
Gun violence is an epidemic. But day after day, tragedy after tragedy, the GOP has blocked even the smallest steps to #stopgunviolence.
— Elizabeth Warren (@SenWarren) January 5, 2016
Obama earlier said his decision to use his unilateral executive powers to address the issue came after the U.S. Congress failed to take action. He said that “responsible” gun owners and families have contacted him and sent letters asking him to take action.
This content was originally published by teleSUR.
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