After President Obama’s announcement that he is considering taking executive action to strengthen the nation’s gun control laws, former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay has some advice for his successors in Congress: consider impeachment. According to a recent Independent Journal article, DeLay, a Texas Republican who served as House majority leader from 2002 to 2005 and House Majority Whip before that, thinks that the House should move forward with impeachment proceedings if Obama takes such executive action.
“The very fact that you might bring it before the Judiciary Committee and investigate it and determine whether it’s an impeachable offense is a very healthy thing to do,” DeLay was quoted in the article.
Obama’s interest in issuing an executive order with regards to gun control came after a 26-year-old gunman killed nine at an Oregon community college earlier this month, the Independent Journal report claimed.
"In terms of what I can do, I've asked my team, as I have in the past, to scrub what kinds of authorities do we have to enforce the laws that we have in place more effectively to keep guns out of the hands of criminals. Are there additional actions that we can take that might prevent even a handful of these tragic deaths from taking place?" Obama was quoted in a related Washington Examiner article about possibly using an executive order to take action toward more comprehensive gun control.
Current law requires only those who are "engaged in the business" of firearm sales to obtain a federal license and conduct background checks, the Examiner stated.
Noting that he was in the House when former President Bill Clinton was impeached in 1998, DeLay argued that the right to impeach, which is given to Congress as part of the U.S. Constitution, will at least send a message to Obama that he needs to back down, the Independent Journal claimed. DeLay was quoted in the article:
“The House needs to use its power of hearings to start letting the American people know that this is a lawless president, we have a lawless Supreme Court — and the judiciary needs to step up and show the American people what this president is doing, which will support any other efforts to defund the president.”
An October 2015 Gallup poll referenced in the report found that 55% of all Americans would be open to additional gun control regulations, an increase compared to recent years.