America is reeling from yet another mass shooting, 14 dead in California less than a week after 9 were gunned down at a family planning clinic in Colorado. The shooting in California is the worst since Sandy Hook in 2012 but once again Obama is having to plea for gun control in the US…and once again it appears to be falling on the deaf ears of Congress.
There are already a number of articles on here about gun control (search ‘gun’ on the blog search function) so the arguments will not be rehashed here. But the top story from Politico discusses the lack of action likely from Congress which is useful given that the House of Representatives is now under the leadership of a new Speaker. Yet, in an election year, with the vast quantities of money the NRA spend on electioneering, it would be a brave Congressman to stand up against guns (see: http://www.opensecrets.org/orgs/summary.php?id=D000000082)
Obama’s efforts to encourage gun control centre largely around his ‘Now is the Time’ plan (https://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/docs/wh_now_is_the_time_full.pdf) in which he looks to use executive power to force action on the issue with or without Congress. This excellent document looks at the progress Obama has made on this and could be used to discuss presidential powers and separation of powers – https://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/docs/november_exec_actions_progress_report_final.pdf
On the flip side, in the wake of this recent shooting, Politico argue that Obama has achieved little – http://www.politico.com/story/2015/12/obama-gun-control-efforts-216415
And Republicans are not in a hurry to do anything about it – http://www.politico.com/story/2015/12/gop-unmoved-on-gun-control-as-massacres-pile-up-216407