President Obama ordered two more executive actions Thursday to restrict guns, banning the re-importation of military surplus firearms to private entities and proposing a regulation that would close a loophole in background checks.
On the day B. Todd Jones is being sworn in as the new director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the White House said the ATF is proposing to conduct background checks on firearms registered to a trust or corporation. The administration said felons and others prohibited from having firearms currently are able to avoid background checks by choosing this route.
“ATF reports that last year alone, it received more than 39,000 requests for transfers of these restricted firearms to trusts or corporations,” the White House said.
Also, the administration said it will deny requests to bring military-grade firearms back into the U.S. to private entities, with a few exceptions, such as for museums. Currently, when the U.S. provides military firearms to its allies, either as direct commercial sales or through the foreign military sales or military assistance programs,
those firearms may not be imported back into the United States without U.S. government approval.
Since 2005, the U.S. government has authorized requests to re-import more than 250,000 of these firearms.
The orders follow 23 other executive actions on gun control that the White House unveiled in January. In the spring, the Democratic-controlled Senate rejected a proposal to require expanded background checks for gun purchases.
“Even as Congress fails to act on common-sense proposals, like expanding criminal background checks and making gun trafficking a federal crime, the president and vice president remain committed to using all the tools in their power to make progress toward reducing gun violence,” the White House said.
Mr. Obama told a group of big-city mayors on Tuesday that he would be taking more executive actions to curb gun violence.