The Corner

Obama Directs His Executive Power at America’s Gun Owners

We knew President Obama would use the security of a second term to maximize gun-control measures that otherwise wouldn’t pass Congress. Today he didn’t disappoint. Of the wide-ranging 23 actions, these four are of particular concern:

Issue a Presidential Memorandum directing the Centers for Disease Control to research the causes and prevention of gun violence.

Memories are short. It was only 15 years ago that Congress cut off federal funding for the Centers for Disease Control’s gun research. Top CDC officials such as Patrick O’Carroll, M.D., had said things like “We’re going to systematically build a case that owning firearms causes deaths. We’re doing the most we can do, given the political realities.”

Nor was Congress pleased that the CDC had funded in the spring of 1995 a newsletter from the San Francisco gun-control group the Trauma Foundation. This newsletter advised “advocates” to “organize a picket at gun manufacturing sites” and to “work for campaign finance reform to weaken the gun lobby’s clout.” There’s no reason to believe the CDC will not again use taxpayer millions to pay for more anti-gun-rights pamphleteering.

Clarify that the Affordable Care Act does not prohibit doctors asking their patients about guns in their homes.

This is an effort to overcome a legislative remedy already enacted or considered in several states, most notably Florida. The prohibition simply states doctors can’t ask their patients politically motivated questions about guns in their homes, as the gun-ban-advocating American Academy of Pediatrics urges them to do. State-level policy initiatives to address this problem will proceed regardless of federal law.

Review safety standards for gun locks and gun safes (Consumer Product Safety Commission).

Been there, killed that. Backdoor attempts at gun control through the CPSC are a favorite tactic of gun-control advocates. Dave Kopel and I wrote an NRO piece the last time they tried it. It applies this time too.

Nominate an ATF director.

We hope President Obama nominates a director who won’t allow his agency to illegally let “assault weapons” be sold for use by Mexican drug gangs to kill American law-enforcement officers and Mexican citizens.

— Timothy Wheeler, MD is director of Doctors for Responsible Gun Ownership, a project of the Second Amendment Foundation.


The Latest