Biden wants to fast-track gun legislation prior to Republicans assuming control of House

by Jacob Fuller

Willie R. Tubbs, FISM News


President Joe Biden indicated Thursday that he would push the still-fully-Democrat-controlled Congress to pass more firearm restrictions before a Republican-led House is able to slam the door on such changes in January.

Speaking with reporters in Nantucket, Massachusetts, Biden said he would seek legislation to require stricter enforcement of “red flag laws” and to enact a full ban on “semiautomatic weapons,” a broad term that includes a large percentage of firearms available in the U.S., including many of the nation’s most popular handguns, rifles, and shotguns.

“Look, the idea that we’re not enforcing red-flag laws, period, just based on knowledge, not on parents saying or a loved one saying you should arrest this person now for his own sake, is ridiculous,” Biden said. “We got one of the first red-flag laws in the state of Delaware, and my son Beau was the one enforcing it. And it made a lot of difference. It saves lives. So that’s number one.

“Number two, the idea … we still allow semiautomatic weapons to be purchased is sick. It’s just sick. It has no, no social redeeming value. Zero. None. Not a single, solitary rationale for it except profit for the gun manufacturers.”

Coming as they did on Thanksgiving, Biden’s remarks did not draw quite the volume of condemnation from Republicans one would expect on a normal business day.

Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.) was a notable exception. Upon learning of Biden’s remarks, Massie tweeted, “Americans rejected Pelosi’s gun control schemes in the [midterms], yet here is Biden saying he wants to ban modern firearms, and maligning most gun owners.”

It’s not uncommon for presidents, be they Democrat or Republican, to try and quickly bring to fruition laws on the eve of their party losing power in any branch of the federal government. But it is substantially less common for these attempts to work.

The optics do not play in favor of the legislatively aggressive party during lame-duck sessions. Electoral decisions have been made and the nation is in a state of biding its collective time until January.

When asked about his ability to actually get his bill passed, Biden told reporters “I’m going to try.”

A reporter responded with the follow-up “What will you try?” to which Biden answered, “I’m going to try to get rid of ‘assault weapons.’”

The president seemed to immediately realize the challenge he would likely face, to say nothing of the risk he runs of over-promising on what would be major legislation.

In response to another question about the feasibility of such legislation during the lame-duck session, Biden said, “I’m going to do it whenever I — I got to make that assessment as I get in and start counting the votes.”

The president’s remarks came after he was questioned about a mass shooting that recently occurred in Chesapeake, Virginia. A man shot and tragically killed six people before allegedly committing suicide on Tuesday night in a Walmart.

“I’m sick and tired of these shootings,” President Biden stated. “We should have much stricter gun laws.”