Biden Signs Executive Order To Bring U.S. "As Close To Universal Background Checks As Possible" Without Additional Legislation

 March 15, 2023

On Tuesday, according to White House sources, President Joe Biden announced his latest executive order, expanding background checks for more firearm sales, and expanding the statutory definition of a firearms dealer. The order is said to also prevent firearms dealers without licenses from selling guns.

Biden signed the executive order during a trip to Monterey Park, California, where he met with families and the community affected by the mass shooting that killed 11, and injured nine others, in January. The White House said, that this executive order will bring the U.S. "as close to universal background checks as possible" without additional legislation.

Under this order, Biden also directed, Attorney General Merrick Garland, to develop and implement a plan to prevent former federally licensed firearms dealers, from continuing to engage in the business of dealing in firearms. The president was referring to those dealers whose licenses have been revoked or surrendered. The order directs the attorney general to publicly release ATF records from the inspection of firearms dealers cited for violation of federal firearm laws.

He explained, that the order will also increase the use of extreme protection, improve public awareness, like "red flag" laws and safe storage of firearms. According to Amy Barnhorst, a psychiatrist at UC Davis Health, and an expert on violence prevention, a gun violence restraining order is an example of a red flag situation. She said-

“Red flag laws are a tool law enforcement and others can use when somebody is clearly at high risk of doing something with a firearm, but they can't be arrested because no crime has been committed and they don't appear to need a mental health hold or qualify for one,”

-Amy Barnhorst, MD psychiatrist, UC Davis Health

By partnering with law enforcement, educators, health care providers, and other community leaders, Biden encouraged his Cabinet to make the most "effective use" of these orders. In consultation with the Department of Justice, Biden is also directing members of his Cabinet to expand existing federal campaigns, especially efforts to promote safe storage of firearms.

The order also directs Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, to work to "reduce the loss or theft of firearms during shipment". Further, it includes improving the reporting of such losses or thefts by engaging with carriers and shippers.

The White House claimed that the order will also hold the gun industry "accountable" by providing the public and policymakers with "more information regarding federally licensed firearms dealers who are violating the law.” It further requires the Department of Defense (DOD) to develop and implement principles to advance firearm and public safety practices, through DOD acquisition of firearms, helping "catch shooters by accelerating federal law enforcement’s reporting of ballistics data."

Making it easier for law enforcement to connect multiple crime scenes and catch shooters, The National Integrated Ballistics Information Network (NIBIN) currently allows federal, state and local law enforcement to match fired cartridge casings to the guns from which they were fired. This new order directs all federal law enforcement agencies to issue "rigorous requirements regarding NIBIN data submission and use of this tool."

Accelerating and intensifying implementation of the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, Biden under this order, hopes to improve federal support for victims and survivors’ families, gun violence survivors, first responders to gun violence, and communities affected by gun violence. Reportedly, it will also advance congressional efforts to prevent the proliferation of firearms undetectable by metal detectors.

With regard to working with Congress on gun control legislation, a senior administration official said-

 "I think when you do gun violence policy, you always have to have hope. And I think there always is hope." adding "The president is going to continue to fight for commonsense gun safety legislation, and there are all sorts of pieces of legislation we need," ... "But in the meantime, [the president] wants the federal government to be doing all we can with existing authority to reduce gun violence. And that is what this executive order does."

Senior White House Administration Official

“I have a very strict gun control policy: if there's a gun around, I want to be in control of it.”

-Clint Eastwood


“This battle for 'common-sense' gun control laws pits emotion and passion against logic and reason. All too often in such a contest, logic loses. So, expect more meaningless, if not harmful, 'gun control' legislation. Good news - if you're a crook.”

-Larry Elder
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