The official was responding to a journalist's questions about the President's reaction to news of a shooting that occurred at an Oregon high school. Two people were killed, including the shooter.
While the President is looking for ways to implement his gun control agenda unilaterally, Earnest stressed that the Administration would also like to see legislative action to increase gun control.
"The President's goal is to look for opportunities to act administratively, unilaterally using his executive authority to try to make our communities safer," Earnest said. "We're always looking for those opportunities. But none of those opportunities when they present themselves is going to be an acceptable substitute for robust legislative action."
Following the 2012 school shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., Obama implemented 23 new executive actions designed to strengthen gun control laws.