White House Plans Executive Action On Guns

White House officials are seeking a way to use executive authority to close the so-called gun show loophole that allows thousands of people to buy firearms each year without a background check, but complicated legal issues have slowed the process.

Almost three years ago, after the killing of 20 children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., President Obama asked Congress to change the law to require background checks for weapons sold outside the network of licensed gun dealers, including sales at gun shows or through the Internet. A bill to tighten the background system died in the Senate a few months later — dashing the administration’s hopes for legislative action.

The deadlock in the Senate continued Thursday as Republicans blocked several efforts by Democrats to add gun control provisions to a budget measure.