As of August 29 of this year, President Obama’s list of “executive actions” on gun control consisted of the following:
1. Issue a Presidential Memorandum to require federal agencies to make relevant data available to the federal background check system.
2. Address unnecessary legal barriers, particularly relating to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, that may prevent states from making information available to the background check system.
3. Improve incentives for states to share information with the background check system.
4. Direct the Attorney General to review categories of individuals prohibited from having a gun to make sure dangerous people are not slipping through the cracks.
5. Propose rulemaking to give law enforcement the ability to run a full background check on an individual before returning a seized gun.
6. Publish a letter from ATF to federally licensed gun dealers providing guidance on how to run background checks for private sellers.
7. Launch a national safe and responsible gun ownership campaign.
8. Review safety standards for gun locks and gun safes (Consumer Product Safety Commission).
9. Issue a Presidential Memorandum to require federal law enforcement to trace guns recovered in criminal investigations.
10. Release a DOJ report analyzing information on lost and stolen guns and make it widely available to law enforcement.
11. Nominate an ATF director.
12. Provide law enforcement, first responders, and school officials with proper training for active shooter situations.
13. Maximize enforcement efforts to prevent gun violence and prosecute gun crime.
14. Issue a Presidential Memorandum directing the Centers for Disease Control to research the causes and prevention of gun violence.
15. Direct the Attorney General to issue a report on the availability and most effective use of new gun safety technologies and challenge the private sector to develop innovative technologies.
16. Clarify that the Affordable Care Act does not prohibit doctors asking their patients about guns in their homes.
17. Release a letter to health care providers clarifying that no federal law prohibits them from reporting threats of violence to law enforcement authorities.
18. Provide incentives for schools to hire school resource officers.
19. Develop model emergency response plans for schools, houses of worship and institutions of higher education.
20. Release a letter to state health officials clarifying the scope of mental health services that Medicaid plans must cover.
21. Finalize regulations clarifying essential health benefits and parity requirements within ACA exchanges.
22. Commit to finalizing mental health parity regulations.
23. Launch a national dialogue led by Secretaries Sebelius and Duncan on mental health.
24. Require officers of NFA Trusts to undergo a background check and get a signoff from a chief law-enforcement officer for any transfer of an NFA registered firearm or device
25. Prohibit the reimportation of “military-grade firearms” for purchase by “private entities.”
A 2012 Department of Justice report, Enforcement of the Brady Act, 2010: Federal and State Investigations and Prosecutions of Firearm Applicants Denied by a NICS Check in 2010 (PDF) detailed that, out of the 76,000 firearms purchase denials in 2010 – some 47% of which were for “a record of a felony indictment or conviction” – a grand total of 62 cases were referred for prosecution.
I thought #13 in the list above was supposed to address that.
More than a year after the Sandy Hook school shooting, President Obama’s directive to amp up prosecutions of federal gun laws hasn’t made much difference in how many people are charged with gun crimes.
U.S. attorneys that prosecute such cases charged 11,674 people with breaking federal gun laws in the fiscal year that ended in September, compared to 11,728 people the year before.
The Justice Department says it has taken other steps to increase firearms enforcement, including forming a task force that advises federal prosecutors on how to reduce gun violence, and creating a database to allow law enforcement to trace weapons across jurisdictions.
But the figures show how ineffectual the president’s executive action was (this is my shocked face – ed.), at least in the short term, in ginning up prosecutions. Without new legislation or increased resources, U.S. attorneys are unlikely to prosecute more gun crimes, experts say.
What the hell do they need “new legislation” for? A signed Form 4473 isn’t enough?