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The Editors

Obama Should Act Now on Clinton's Gun Proposal

Why wait for the next administration to take executive action on the gun-show loophole?
Can Obama get us across?

Can Obama get us across?

Photographer: Scott Olson/Getty Images

The political purpose behind the proposals to combat gun violence that Hillary Clinton introduced Monday may be to outflank her top rival for the Democratic presidential nomination, Bernie Sanders. On this issue, he's been a shrinking violet. But among them is a bid for executive action so compelling that Barack Obama should act on it now, and not risk waiting for the next president.

Clinton supports a number of sound legislative actions on guns: She would seek to repeal the gun industry's congressionally mandated immunity from tort law, a shameless special-interest loophole. She wants more funding to inspect gun dealers, most of whom haven't undergone required inspections in the past five years. She supports a federal law barring all domestic abusers and stalkers from purchasing firearms. And she backs a so-called assault weapons ban for military-style semi-automatic rifles.