The National Rifle Association fired back at President Obama’s executive actions on gun control Tuesday, mere hours after the president announced he plans to unilaterally alter the nation’s laws governing the buying and selling of firearms with the stroke of his pen.
Chris Cox, the executive director for the NRA’s Institute for Legislative Action, released the following statement soon after Obama’s announcement:
Once again, President Obama has chosen to engage in political rhetoric, instead of offering meaningful solutions to our nation's pressing problems. Today's event also represents an ongoing attempt to distract attention away from his lack of a coherent strategy to keep the American people safe from terrorist attack.
The American people do not need more emotional, condescending lectures that are completely devoid of facts. The men and women of the National Rifle Association take a back seat to no one when it comes to keeping our communities safe. But the fact is that President Obama's proposals would not have prevented any of the horrific events he mentioned. The timing of this announcement, in the eighth and final year of his presidency, demonstrates not only political exploitation but a fundamental lack of seriousness.
The proposed executive actions are ripe for abuse by the Obama Administration, which has made no secret of its contempt for the Second Amendment. The NRA will continue to fight to protect the fundamental, individual Right to Keep and Bear Arms as guaranteed under our Constitution. We will not allow law-abiding gun owners to be harassed or intimidated for engaging in lawful, constitutionally-protected activity – nor will we allow them to become scapegoats for President Obama's failed policies.
In his speech, Obama accused the “gun lobby” in Washington, D.C., of “holding Congress hostage,” encouraging Americans to “get mobilized and organized” against those who object to his call for stricter gun control measures. These actions include requiring gun sellers -- including individuals who may only sell one or two firearms a year online -- to obtain a federally recognized license and run background checks on individuals before selling any firearms.
Obama also said he plans to make changes to tighten the nation's background check system, and hire more agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms to enforce the new regulations.
Soon after the NRA released its statement, Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) released posted a scathing retort against Republicans and the NRA on Facebook:
It's become clear that no mass shooting, no matter how big or bloody, will inspire Republicans to put children and...Posted by U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders on Tuesday, January 5, 2016