Great analysis from the Washington Times.
To help soothe the nerves of some anxiety-ridden gun owners who believe an Executive Order from our President is a possibility.
Executive gun ‘order’ easier said than done
(Washington Times) – The administration is eyeing unilateral steps on gun control, but analysts said there are few things President Obama can do on his own because gun control is one area where Congress has jealously guarded its power to make the laws.
In many areas, Congress writes broad laws but gives the executive branch wide discretion to write rules and regulations. Not so with guns.
“The problem with gun control is that Congress has been extraordinarily explicit,” said John Hudak, a scholar on executive power at the Brookings Institution. “When gun-control legislation is passed, it is usually very detailed in what Congress intended and it is usually very detailed in the barriers it sets up for the executive branch. That limits presidential authority to use executive power because there is little discretion.”
Vice President Joseph R. Biden, who is leading the White House task force on gun control, said this week that Mr. Obama is looking at “executive orders, executive action” that he can take without having to depend on Congress, which has blocked stricter gun control for nearly two decades.
Constitutional analysts and gun specialists said there may be some room for the administration to act alone to tighten the instant background checks by asking states to pony up more data.
But they said anything broader, such as banning types of guns, ammunition or magazines, would have to come from Congress.