Oklahoma delegation bridle at gun control by executive order
BY RANDY KREHBIEL World Staff Writer
Friday, January 11, 2013
1/11/13 at 5:30 AM
Oklahoma's congressional delegation turned out in force Thursday against the suggestion of gun control by executive order.
"What the president and the executive branch are trying to do on gun control is absurd," said 2nd District Congressman Markwayne Mullin. "The president's use of executive orders to limit Second Amendment rights is only a tactic to bypass Congress and force untested laws onto the American people."
Other members of the delegation responded along the same lines, if with somewhat more restraint, to Vice President Joe Biden's remark on Wednesday that President Obama would resort to executive orders to implement some form of additional gun control in the event Congress does not act.
"President Obama ought not use executive orders to erode civil liberties," said 1st District Congressman Jim Bridenstine. "I will make every effort to preclude such efforts and stand firm for the 2nd Amendment."
The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that executive orders may clarify or further define existing law but may not create new law. It is not clear how Obama might alter gun control laws through an executive order.
"I share the concerns of my constituents on any usurpation of power from Congress that the president might use through executive order to restrict gun rights," said 3rd District Congressman Frank Lucas. "Such actions would be a blatant disregard for the legislative branch and the appropriate process of enacting laws. I believe at this current time, when emotions are high, it is important for leaders of our country to take a step back and make sound and rational decisions while considering all factors contributing to recent tragedies."
Fourth District Congressman Tom Cole said he is "confident House Republicans would act to override any presidential order that subverts the legislative process to infringe on Second Amendment rights."
"Rushing through new laws that limit the rights of law-abiding gun owners is not the answer to gun violence," said Cole. "This is a complex cultural, legal and mental health issue that requires a deliberative and transparent debate among the American people and their representatives in Congress."
According to the National Register, President Obama has issued 144 executive orders during his first term, a rate similar to other recent presidents. President George W. Bush issued 291 in two full terms, Bill Clinton 364. Ronald Reagan issued 381.
The use of executive orders seems to be declining. Dwight Eisenhower issued 486 of them, Harry Truman 896 and Franklin D. Roosevelt 3,728.
Original Print Headline: Delegation bridles at gun control
Randy Krehbiel 918-581-8365
Jim Bridenstine (left), Markwayne Mullin, Frank Lucas and Tom Cole: "President Obama ought not use executive orders to erode civil liberties," said Bridenstine