Obama meets with Bloomberg to talk guns

Obama meets with Bloomberg to talk guns
President Obama on Wednesday met with former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, an ally of the White House on gun control. 
 
The meeting, which was not on the president's public schedule, comes as he is weighing new executive action on guns in response to a series of mass shootings that have marred his presidency. 
 
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Obama huddled with Bloomberg "as part of the administration's continuing push to address gun violence in America," the White House said in a statement. 
 
"The two discussed ways to keep guns out of the hands of those who should not have access to them and what more could be done at the state and local level to help address gun violence in America," the White House added. 
 
Senior adviser Valerie Jarrett, a close Obama confidante who has spearheaded the White House's gun control push, also attended the meeting.
 
Obama has met with a number of high-profile gun control advocates in recent weeks as the White House scrambles to finalize its new proposals. 
 
Last week, Obama invited former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.) and her husband, Mark Kelly, to the White House to discuss the issue. 
 
Giffords, who survived a gunshot wound to the head during a 2011 shooting at an event in her district, now runs a political action committee to push for stronger gun laws. 
 
Bloomberg runs a similar organization, known as Everytown for Gun Safety
 
White House officials have been scouring the nation’s gun laws for possible executive actions Obama could take since the shooting at a community college in Oregon in October.
 
Facing opposition from Republicans in Congress, Obama is considering using his executive powers to broaden background check requirements for gun sellers.
 
Such a move would surely draw criticism from gun rights groups and Republicans in Congress, who say Obama lacks the authority to expand background checks on his own. 
 
Jarrett said last week the proposal is in the final stages of being drafted, but the White House has yet to say when the policy will be released. 
 
The two leaders also discussed climate change, as Obama focuses on implementing the U.S. commitments made in the Paris climate deal.