Obama Unveils Plan to Address Gun Violence: ‘I’m Going to Talk About This’

• October 2, 2015 6:11 pm


Present Obama announced his intention to unleash the gift of gab on the problem of gun violence on Friday.

"The main thing I'm going to do is I'm going to talk about this," Obama said. "And I will politicize it, because our inaction is a political decision that we are making."

Obama took questions after a press conference announcing the resignation of Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. Questions centered on Thursday's mass shooting at Umpqua Community College in Oregon, a shooting that killed 10.

Obama's comment was part of a broader admission that there was little he could do to pass gun control measures in the face of broad public opposition to such measures.

"This will not change until the politics changes and the behavior of elected officials changes," Obama said.

While a majority of Americans support certain minor gun control measures, such as universal background checks, these measures would likely be insufficient to reduce the incidence of mass shootings. Measures that would be effective at stopping mass shootings, by contrast, would have to win over a skeptical American public.

Support for gun control has been declining for over a decade, according to the Pew Research Center. Forty-six percent of Americans say that controlling gun ownership is more important than protecting gun rights, down from a high of 66 percent in 1999; fifty-two percent of respondents said that protecting gun rights was more important.

Obama announced that he will pair his coming rhetorical offensive with an attempt to tighten enforcement of existing gun laws.

"I've asked my team, as I have in the past, to scrub what kind of authorities we have to enforce the laws that we have," Obama said.

In 2013, Obama signed 23 minor executive orders on gun-related issues.

Published under: Barack Obama, Gun Control, Guns