Gun rights activists are fuming after witnessing President Trump offer plenty of ground to liberal lawmakers during his open discussion on gun control Wednesday at the White House.
Trump distanced himself from The National Rifle Association on a few specific policies. When it came to raising the age limit for buying certain firearms from 18 to 21, Trump said he knows the NRA is against it, but he is "seriously considering" it. Republicans can't be "afraid" of the gun lobby, the president said. Additionally, in an exchange with Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA), a survivor from last year's congressional baseball practice shooting, Trump informed Scalise that his concealed carry reciprocity provision would not make it into the legislation they're drafting.
"Not in this bill," he said.
The NRA, who endorsed Trump earlier than they have any other presidential candidate, was none too happy that the president sort of threw them under the bus, although he noted that there's "no bigger fan" of the organization than him.
The group gave Trump kudos for "great TV," but not much else.
"While today's meeting made for great TV, the gun-control proposals discussed would make for bad policy that would not keep our children safe," NRA public affairs director Jennifer Baker said. "Instead of punishing law-abiding gun owners for the acts of a deranged lunatic, our leaders should pass meaningful reforms that would actually prevent future tragedies."
What should have been discussed at length in that meeting, Baker said, was the need to address our broken mental health system, strengthen background checks, secure our schools and assure that the dangerous mentally ill do not get access to firearms.