White House Responds to Another Round of Gun Petitions

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The appeals followed the shooting of 20 children at a Connecticut elementary school in December.

The White House posted eight responses to petitions on its We the People website on Monday, among them requests that the president not to limit the rights of gun owners, that he endorse a National  Rifle Association proposal to put armed guards in schools and one asking him to give up Secret Service protection for himself and his family.

Dozens of petitions urging both stricter and looser gun laws were posted to We the People in the days following the December 2012 shooting of 20 children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. President Obama responded to most of those petitions with a video message a week after the shooting, but the petitions that received responses Monday were posted after the video.

Monday’s response to the gun control petition is titled “President Obama Believes in the Second Amendment. He Also Believes in Common Sense.” It describes the president’s efforts to enforce more rigorous background checks for gun buyers by executive action in the absence of new gun control legislation.

The response to the petition asking the president to forego armed guards notes that Congress mandated the president receive Secret Service protection in 1901 following the assassination of President William McKinley, the third assassination of a sitting U.S. president. The response goes on to detail the president’s gun control efforts.

The response to the NRA’s National School Shield proposal outlines the president’s plan to provide $150 million for school districts to spend at their discretion on guards, school psychologists, social workers and other officials dedicated to school safety.

The White House has tended to post just one or two We the People responses at a time rather than eight at once. All of Monday’s responses were to petitions posted before January 2013, when the White House raised the threshold for petitions to receive an official response from 25,000 signatures to 100,000 signatures.

Other responses posted Monday were on less controversial topics.

They noted that:

(Image via Stephanie Frey/Shutterstock.com)