"We have a pattern now of mass shootings in this country that has no parallel anywhere else in the world, and there's some steps we could take, not to eliminate every one of these mass shootings, but to improve the odds that they don't happen as frequently, common-sense gun safety laws, stronger background checks," Obama said during an interview with CBS News' Norah O'Donnell.
The interview with CBS occurred as the situation in San Bernardino was unfolding.
"My hope is that we're able to contain this particular shooting and we don't yet know what the motives of the shooters are, but what we do know is that there are steps we can take to make Americans safer and that we should come together in a bipartisan basis at every level of government to make these rare as opposed to normal," he continued. "We should never think that this is something that just happens in the ordinary course of events, because it doesn't happen with the same frequency in other countries."
He also called for reforms to block individuals on the "no fly" list from being able to purchase guns.
"For those who are concerned about terrorism ... some may be aware of the fact that we have a no fly list where people can't get on planes but those same people who we don't allow to fly could go into a store right now in the United States and buy a firearm and there's nothing that we can do to stop them. That's a law that needs to be changed," he said.
The shooting was at Inland Regional Center, which helps individuals with developmental disabilities.
Throughout his time in office, Obama has issued statements on more than a dozen mass shootings in the United States. Just one day before the San Bernardino shooting, Obama discussed last week's shooting at a Planned Parenthood facility in Colorado.
"With respect to Planned Parenthood, obviously, my heart goes out to those families impacted. I mean, I say this every time we got one of these mass shootings, this just doesn't happen in other countries," Obama said. "In the United States we have the power to do more to prevent what is just a regular process of gun homicides."
Obama also addressed the Planned Parenthood shooting, and the epidemic of gun violence in general, in a Saturday statement.
"This is not normal," Obama wrote. "We can’t let it become normal. If we truly care about this -- if we’re going to offer up our thoughts and prayers again, for God knows how many times, with a truly clean conscience -- then we have to do something about the easy accessibility of weapons of war on our streets to people who have no business wielding them. Period. Enough is enough."
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