Posted 3 years ago

By Post Staff

President Barack Obama Wednesday unveiled a package of gun control measures developed by Vice President Joe Biden’s special committee.

Among the things he’s asking Congress for are universal background checks on gun buyers that would close a loophole that allows for private gun sales to occur without the checks, and a ban military-style assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines.

The president also announced that he’s implementing 23 executive orders on the issue, including measures to encourage schools to hire police officers, and requiring federal agencies to make more data available for background checks.

Among Nebraska’s all-Republican Congressional delegation, Senator Mike Johanns had the most measured response…although all of them promised to carefully review any specific legislation when it comes before them while emphasizing their commitment to protecting the Second Amendment.

Johanns says “we all share the same goal of reducing gun violence…but placing a heavier burden on responsible gun owners will do little to prevent troubled individuals from carrying out violent acts.”

Johanns says that “as sound” as the intent of Mr Obama’s unilateral executive actions may be, the president has a responsibility to fully explain them “because their implementation deals directly with the freedoms enshrined in our nation’s founding documents.”

He also echoes the position taken by National Rifle Association leaders since the Connecticut shootings by saying that there needs to be “an honest conversation about violence and how to prevent it”…including addressing “the glorification of violence in movies and video games, as well as our society’s understanding of mental health care issues.”

3rd District Congressman Adrian Smith calls reducing violence “a necessary goal”, but is concerned the President’s plan would “do nothing to address the underlying causes of violence” but “would infringe on the Second Amendment…calling it “yet another instance of the President bypassing Congress to impose his agenda.

Senator Deb Fischer says she doesn’t think guns are causing the violence in America…calling it “an emotional response when people look at guns as the culprit.” She says the culture of violence…including movies and video games…should be looked at in a comprehensive bill that also addresses mental health needs in a step by step approach.”