Just hours before a movie theatre shooting in Louisiana claimed the lives of three people, President Obama said the inability to pass gun control legislation has been the most frustrating part of his presidency.
"That is an area where if you ask me where has been the one area where I feel that I've been most frustrated and most stymied, it is the fact that the United States of America is the one advanced nation on earth in which we do not have sufficient common-sense, gun-safety laws, even in the face of repeated mass killings," Obama said in a Thursday night interview on BBC.
Though he vowed to continue pushing for gun control legislation, his demeanor seemed to indicate he has accepted that Congress is unlikely to approve any significant changes to the country's gun laws.
He added: "And you know, if you look at the number of Americans killed since 9/11 by terrorism, it's less than 100. If you look at the number that have been killed by gun violence, it's in the tens of thousands. And for us not to be able to resolve that issue has been something that is distressing. But it is not something that I intend to stop working on in the remaining 18 months."
Obama has pushed for stricter gun control since 2008, but hasn't managed any significant changes to federal law.
Thursday's movie theatre shooting in Lafayette, La., by a 58-year-old man left two dead and nine others injured. He eventually turned the gun on himself and took his own life, police said. The shooting comes days after a jury delivered a guilty verdict in the July 2012 theatre shooting in Aura, Colo., that left 12 people dead and 70 injured.
A December 2014 poll by the Pew Research Center revealed that Americans say protecting gun rights is more important that controlling gun ownership, 52 percent to 46 percent.