President Trump's comments on gun control shocked Republicans on live television yesterday. Pitching for gun control he urged a group of lawmakers at the White House to resurrect gun safety legislation that has been opposed for years by the powerful National Rifle Association and the vast majority of his party.
In a remarkable meeting, the president was seen pushing against the (National Rifle Association) NRA narrative, much to the delight of Democrats leaving Republicans red faced. He called for comprehensive gun control legislation that would extend background checks to weapons purchased at gun shows and on the internet. The measures would keep guns from mentally ill people, secure schools and restrict gun sales for some young adults. He also suggested a discussion on a ban on assault weapons.
At one point, Trump suggested that law enforcement authorities should be given the power to seize guns from mentally ill people or others who could present a danger without first going to court. ''I like taking the guns early,'' he said, adding, ''Take the guns first, go through due process second.''
However, Republican lawmakers suggested to reporters that they remained opposed to gun control measures.
''We're not ditching any constitutional protections simply because the last person the president talked to today doesn't like them,'' Senator Ben Sasse, Republican, of Nebraska, said in a statement.
"We can't wait and play games and nothing gets done," Trump said as he opened the session with 17 House and Senate lawmakers. "We want to stop the problems."
Trump had earlier supported ideas popular with Democrats only to yield to opposition from his conservative base and his GOP allies in Congress. According to commentators, it is not clear if he would continue to push for swift and significant changes to gun laws if confronted with resistance from his party.