White House press secretary Jen Psaki on Friday confirmed that President Biden intends to sign executive orders on gun control.
Psaki replied “Yes” to a journalist’s question about whether reporters should “be expecting executive orders from the president on gun measures.”
But she said the timing was unclear due to a review process.
“When the president was the vice president in the Obama-Biden administration, he helped put in place 23 executive actions to combat gun violence. It’s one of the levers that we can use,” Psaki said at her daily press briefing.
The new gun control push by Democrats follows the murders on Monday of 10 people at a Boulder, Colo., grocery store. Last week, a gunman killed eight at Atlanta-area massage parlors.
The White House is considering orders to require background checks for “ghost guns” that can be manufactured at home without serial numbers and a requirement that local cops be notified if someone fails an FBI background check to buy a gun from a registered dealer, according to recent reports.
The reported orders under consideration aren’t necessarily applicable to the recent shootings.
Suspected Atlanta shooter Robert Long, 21, reportedly bought a semi-automatic firearm from a dealer after passing a background check on the day of the killings. Suspected Boulder gunman Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa, also 21, bought a Ruger AR-556 pistol after passing a background check six days before the attack.
Biden called for gun control legislation Tuesday in a speech at the White House, but significant reforms are unlikely to pass the evenly divided Senate, where 60 votes generally are needed to pass bills.
Thirty-five Senate Democrats introduced legislation this month to ban “assault weapons” including popular semi-automatic guns such as AR-15-style rifles. But it’s not likely to pass. Bipartisan legislation previously failed to expand mandatory background checks to cover private gun transfers among non-dealers.
As vice president, Biden led a federal gun control task force formed in late 2012 after the mass murder of 27 at a Connecticut elementary school. At the time, Biden dispensed gun advice that lawyers said could violate existing laws, including encouraging people to shoot guns in the air and through closed doors to combat possible threats.