In his last press conference this term, President Obama announced on Monday he will be meeting with Vice President Biden to go over proposals to counteract gun violence. These measures are to be announced later this week. Though it can be argued the necessity to discuss gun control has long been present, President Obama acknowledges progress will involve cutting legislative red tape to push laws through Congress.
President Obama asked Vice President Biden to head a task force examining gun violence, and to develop preventative measures in response to the Newtown, Connecticut shooting this past December.
While speaking at a one month anniversary of the mass shooting, President Obama said Congressional members are “going to have a debate and examine their own conscience” regarding passing effective gun legislation.
“If everybody across party lines was as deeply moved [by the Newtown shootings] and saddened as I was, then we’re going to have to vote based on what we think is best,” the President said.
In the Monday news conference, President Obama outlined his key points for tackling this issue: stricter background checks for prospective gun owners, limiting access to high-round ammunition magazines, and “an assault weapons ban that is meaningful.”
Five days after the shooting, the President had emphasized that drastic action needed to be taken on this issue. Though it will now be addressed by his administration publicly, much like any other aspect of the gun control debate it should take some time before anything comes to fruition.
“I will use all the powers [of this office] to help advance efforts aimed at preventing many more tragedies like this,” President Obama said after the Newtown shooting. “We won’t prevent them all, but that can’t be an excuse not to try. I think all of us need to prioritize what we do here in Washington.”
President Obama is to be sworn in to his second Presidential term this Sunday, making his inaugural address the following Monday.
Directly following the shooting, public outcry on social media outlets called for stricter gun regulation. Politicians, journalists, and even celebrities argued that now was the time to discuss this issue. President Obama has many economic issues to face, but finally presenting a comprehensive plan on gun control will be crucial to commence this term.