Gun control advocates are celebrating in anticipation, and Second Amendment activists are decrying reports that President Joe Biden will announce the creation of a White House office of gun violence prevention on Friday.
According to published reports, the office will be staffed by gun control activists from Everytown for Gun Safety, the organization started by former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the Community Justice Action Fund.
“[This decision] is putting the gun prohibition lobby on the White House payroll,” Alan Gottlieb, executive vice president of the Second Amendment Foundation, told The Epoch Times.
Neither Everytown for Gun Safety nor the White House responded to The Epoch Times’ requests for comment.
In a post on X, formerly Twitter, gun control proponent David Hogg celebrated the reports as a victory.
“Young people and their families have been fighting for this for years. This office of gun violence prevention exists because #GenZ and #millennials voted and voted again–” Mr. Hogg wrote.
“Celebrate this win. It shows the difference politics can make.”
Aidan Johnston, Director of Federal Affairs for Gun Owners of America, told The Epoch Times that President Biden may be prepared to declare a public health emergency to implement gun control as New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham did.
“[The Community Justice Action Fund] agenda item number 2 is weaponizing an emergency to push gun control,” Mr. Johnston said.
“We are concerned that Biden will also make the concession to declare a gun violence emergency.”
He agreed with Mr. Gottlieb that the plan amounts to paying activists to find ways to deny Americans Constitutional rights.
“It’s un-American and in direct opposition to the Bill of Rights,” he stated.
Since President Biden was elected, gun control activists have pushed for such an office. While the President was praised for the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act (BSCA) passed in June 2022 and hailed by gun control groups as the “most important gun safety legislation in 30 years,” he has publicly stated that “more needs to be done.”
Second Amendment advocates have condemned President Biden’s administration for reportedly using federal agencies—especially the ATF—to bypass Congress and implement gun control.
The ATF is fighting lawsuits over pistol stabilizing braces, zero-tolerance policies, and redefining what constitutes a “gun dealer.” Many claim that redefining gun dealers is a backdoor attempt to enforce universal background checks.
Mr. Johnston said it is up to pro-Second Amendment forces in Congress to stop what he sees as a dangerous threat.
“If Biden wants to imitate the governor of New Mexico, it’s this office that would be enforcing his gun violence emergency,” Mr. Johnston said.
He said Congress should deny funding to the office before it is even announced. According to Mr. Johnston, that effort is already underway through the “Protecting the Right to Keep and Bear Arms Act,” sponsored by Sen. Mike Braun (R-Ind.) and Rep. Michael Cloud (R-Texas).
The law would prevent using an emergency declaration to deny Second Amendment rights, Mr. Johnston said.
“This legislation is needed now more than ever. Congress needs to vote on the Braun/Cloud legislation,” he said.
Mr. Johnston also expressed skepticism over the timing of the decision.
He pointed out that President Biden had previously resisted setting up the office. He also noted that groups like Everytown for Gun Safety invest heavily in candidates who will support their agenda.
“It seems like President Biden is giving things to the anti-gun lobby in exchange for their endorsements and campaign donations,” Mr. Johnston said.
Mr. Gottlieb said that regardless of the reason for President Biden’s decision, Second Amendment backers in Congress needed to act sooner rather than later.
“I would expect that the Second Amendment supporters in Congress would move to deny the funding for this appalling plan,” he said.