FTA: California Sen. Kamala Harris and other Democrats running for president have promised aggressive action to stem the nation’s epidemic of gun violence if they win the White House in 2020.
But when it comes to restricting gun access, experts say executive action is unlikely to make a significant dent in the problem, and any steps the president takes unilaterally are likely to be embroiled in legal challenges.
The reality is it’s Congress — not the president — that holds most of the power on gun policy.
The executive branch has “limited discretion” on guns, University of California, Los Angeles Law Professor Adam Winkler told McClatchy.
Former Democratic President Barack Obama “looked at all these things and had a list of 20 executive actions. Even with 20 executive actions, it didn’t add up to much,” said Winkler, an expert in constitutional law. “The real takeaway of these campaign promises is how gun control has surged … as a way to energize Democratic voters.”
Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) has taken a bold stance on gun control. It’s so bold that if she were to pull all the stuff she’s saying she would if elected, it would likely spark a civil war.
However, many of the presidential candidates are also making their stands on gun control. Rep. Eric “Nuke ’em All” Swalwell (D-CA) has made it the corner of his campaign. Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) has made it a key point of his as well.
The problem is, the president has limited authority over guns in the United States. As the Sacramento Bee essentially points out, all of the anti-gun rhetoric is little more than tough talk.
by Tom Knighton