According to numerous sources, President Biden will announce the founding of the first-ever federal office of gun violence prevention on Friday, a victory for pro-gun control organisations.
According to reports from the Washington Post and Politico, which cited sources briefed on the operation, the initiative is being led by Stefanie Feldman, a former Biden staffer with knowledge of firearms-related issues. At the White House, Feldman is in charge of the portfolio for firearms policy and previously served on the Domestic Policy Council.
According to the Washington Post, representatives from gun control organisations are apparently involved, including Greg Jackson, executive director of the Community Justice Action Fund, and Rob Wilcox, senior director for federal government affairs at Everytown for Gun Safety.
Requests for comment from the White House, the Community Justice Action Fund, and Everytown for Gun Safety were not immediately fulfilled.
Gun control organisations have urged the president to take executive action on firearms, such as announcing a national emergency on gun violence, ever since Biden assumed office.
A coalition of 117 organisations wrote the president in January demanding the establishment of a federal office for the prevention of gun violence, the establishment of a $5 billion fund for community violence intervention initiatives, the enforcement of the ban on foreign-made weapons, tighter FTC regulations on the marketing of firearms, education campaigns on gun safety, and a detailed implementation strategy for the Safer Communities Act, which was passed last year.
“Unfortunately, gun deaths and injuries continue to ravage our country, impacting Asian American, Black and Brown communities, and neighbourhoods all across the country,” the groups wrote to Biden. “While Congress must continue to prioritize gun violence prevention, you have the opportunity to act boldly by announcing a comprehensive plan of action to reduce gun deaths at the State of the Union on February 7, 2023.”
The most important gun control legislation in almost 30 years was the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, which Biden signed into law. It encouraged states to enact red flag laws and broaden background checks for people between the ages of 18 and 21. In response to mass shootings in Buffalo, New York, and Uvalde, Texas, in 2022, the law was passed.
The president’s proposed additional gun control legislation has not yet been adopted by Congress. The establishment of a new office for the prevention of gun violence accomplishes two goals at once: it contrasts the president’s programme with that of the Republican-controlled House and it appeases a crucial constituency as Biden intensifies his 2024 reelection campaign.