Sen. Mike Lee is clearly unhappy about the executive actions from President Joe Biden this week targeting gun violence.
On Thursday, Biden issued executive orders to combat “ghost guns,” homemade firearms usually built from a kit that are difficult to track because they lack serial numbers. Another order reduces access to stabilizing braces that effectively turn pistols into short-barreled rifles, improving their lethality.
Lee worries that Biden’s actions are just a first step and that the president plans to implement more restrictive gun measures in the future.
“It doesn’t get him to where he wants to go here, which is, I suspect, a national gun registry system and a massive process of federally banning a number of firearms commonly held by law-abiding persons,” Lee said in a Friday morning appearance on Fox News.
“That’s not going to fly,” he added, “and that’s not consistent with the Constitution or what the American people will accept.”
Lee didn’t need to speculate that Biden is far from finished in his push for more firearms regulation — he made that clear in his remarks Thursday at the White House.
“This is just the start,” Biden said, calling gun violence an “epidemic” that claims the lives of 106 Americans every day.
He specifically called for universal background checks for gun purchases — including at gun shows, an assault weapons ban and reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act, which has provisions aimed at keeping firearms out of the hands of abusers.
Lee also warned about some massive spending proposals from the Biden administration, saying they will lead to an “economic catastrophe.”
“The spending levels are out of control,” said Lee. “The national debt now stands at $30 trillion. We just added nearly $2 trillion a few weeks ago. They’re already talking about adding another $3 trillion in infrastructure.”
Lee was objecting to the $1.9 trillion COVID-19 rescue bill passed by Congress in March without any Republican votes. Biden proposed $2.3 trillion in spending on infrastructure and other administration priorities earlier this month.
The Biden administration sent a $1.52 trillion funding request to Congress on Friday. It calls for a 16% increase in spending on domestic programs, including billions of dollars in funding for schools in high-poverty areas and to fight climate change. The administration’s full budget will be released this spring.
Lee predicted those free-spending ways would quickly turn public opinion against Biden and the Democratic majorities in Congress. That’s not the case now. A recent Yahoo News/YouGov poll shows a majority of Americans support every major part of Biden’s infrastructure spending plan.
When considering those proposals, Lee is concerned that there are no constraints on the federal government’s spending anymore.
“They have established no upper limit on how much we spend,” said Lee. “At this point, one has to ask: Why budget at all?”