President Obama considers executive order on gun control - MyFoxAustin.com | KTBC Fox 7 | News, Weather, Sports

President Obama considers executive order on gun control

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The president is now considering bypassing Congress to address the gun violence issue in our country.

On Wednesday Vice President Joe Biden met with gun control activists and gun violence survivors participating in his newly formed gun violence task force.

Biden says he wants input from all sides of the issue, but a final plan may come down without any help from Congress.

"There are executive orders, executive action that can be taken," Biden said. "We have not decided what that is yet, but we're compiling it all with help of the attorney general and all the rest of the cabinet members as well as legislative action we believe was required."

"This is what we consider the opening chess move in the gun debate," said Brian Smith, Ph.D.

Political science professor Brian Smith, Ph.D. of St. Edwards University says presidents use executive order to make things happen, or make congress take action.

He cites the time President Bill Clinton wanted to integrate homosexuals into the military. Congress prevented the executive order by implementing "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."

Smith says Biden's statement, was a very calculated move.

"What we know the President may do with the executive order that may be within the sphere is one of two things: one is some kind of restriction on semi-automatic weapons the other would be on the size of the gun clip," Smith said.

According to Smith, an executive order must be about a single specific issue, can't require funding, and it has a limited lifespan--expiring when the President's term is up.

It's not actually law. Courts can overturn it if it's unconstitutional. Congress can overturn it with a supermajority vote in both the House and Senate--which Smith says won't happen.

"There are not enough republicans in the senate. Not even close. Even in the house there are not enough republicans to really overturn it," Smith said. "[Obama] can do it. The only recourse is re-electing a republican in 2016."

President Obama in Smith's eyes has nothing to lose.

Some voters hope he will reconsider.

"Even if maybe the end result I would approve of I wouldn't want, I don't think that's the way it should work necessarily," said Alyssa Fizel.

"He should consult with both chambers. I just don't think he should go through an executive order," said Dennis Negron.

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