WASHINGTON Jan 18 U.S. Attorney General Eric
Holder said on Friday that President Barack Obama acted within
his legal authority when Obama unveiled a set of executive
actions to try to reduce gun violence.
The chief U.S. law enforcement official and an Obama
appointee, Holder spoke two days after Obama ordered more
scientific research into gun violence and other changes.
Some Republicans said Obama was improperly bypassing
Congress, and at least one said Obama risked impeachment.
"Not one of the executive orders - contrary to what a few
have said - impinges upon anyone's Second Amendment rights or is
inconsistent with the historical use of executive power," Holder
told a committee of the U.S. Conference of Mayors at a
The Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution as interpreted
by the U.S. Supreme Court guarantees Americans the right to own
firearms, with some exceptions.