President Barack Obama is tackling the issue of gun violence by weighing 19 steps that could be taken through executive action alone, congressional officials say.

President Barack Obama holds a news conference
President Barack Obama holds a news conference (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Those steps could include ordering stricter action against people who lie on gun sale background checks, striking limits on federal research into gun use, ordering tougher penalties against gun trafficking, and giving schools flexibility to use grant money to improve safety.

Obama is expected to unveil his proposals as early as Wednesday, barely over a month since the massacre of 20 children and six adults at a Connecticut elementary school.

At the same time Obama is vowing not to back off his support for sweeping gun legislation that would require congressional backing, despite opposition from the influential gun lobby.

"My starting point is not to worry about the politics," he said. "My starting point is to focus on what makes sense, what works."

The president said he would unveil a comprehensive roadmap for curbing gun violence within days. His plan will be based on recommendations from Vice President Joe Biden's gun task force and is expected to include both legislative proposals and steps Obama can implement by himself, using his presidential powers.

"I'm confident that there are some steps that we can take that don't require legislation and that are within my authority as President.  And where you get a step that has the opportunity to reduce the possibility of gun violence then I want to go ahead and take it," said Obama at Monday's press conference.

New York about to pass tough gun law

New York legislative leaders are promising to pass the most restrictive gun law in the nation today.

The measure already has passed the state Senate and now it goes before the Democrat-led Assembly.

The legislation calls for increased sentences for gun crimes, banning Internet sales of assault weapons and a misdemeanor charge for failing to safely store a weapon.

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