Trump Negotiates With Himself On Guns

President Trump’s proposals on new gun safety measures in the days since a school shooting in Parkland, Fla., last month have sent lawmakers scrambling to keep up with his rapidly evolving views.

Lurching from expressing his strong support for the National Rifle Association to teasing fellow Republicans about their fear of the gun-rights group, Trump has thrown out a wide range of ideas on gun control and school safety that left lawmakers on both sides to piece together a coherent plan from his proposals.

Trump’s suggestions on guns have included arming qualified teachers, raising the minimum age required to purchase certain kinds of firearms, confiscating guns from people suspected of having mental illness, and strengthening background checks for prospective gun owners. Some of his proposals — particularly the idea of taking guns away from people before they receive due process — have roiled conservatives who were already skeptical of Trump’s fidelity to the Second Amendment.

“What they're into is the negotiation phase. They're trying to put out everything possible to see where the bites are,” Ford O’Connell, a Republican strategist, said of what the White House has done in the weeks since the Parkland rampage. “But they want to have something concrete done. They don't want to be seen as doing nothing.”

"Republicans see this as a security issue. Democrats see this a gun issue, and that's certainly where the rub comes," O'Connell said. "[Trump] is trying to find where the sweet spot is."

Read more from Sarah Westwood at the Washington Examiner

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