UPDATE: President Trump addressed his plans to pursue background checks at the White House Friday morning.
"I think we can have some meaningful background checks," Trump said. "We don’t want people who are sick having guns. Who does?"
Asked about the NRA's reported resistance to the plan, Trump said "we'll see" where the organization will be.
"They’re great patriots," Trump said. But, in the end, he predicts the NRA "will be a little more neutral."
Conservatives are concerned that President Trump is looking more closely at expanded background checks for gun purchases. He's not there yet, but last weekend's mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton have him musing over gun reform, and, on Friday morning, he said he's been having some important conversations with parties on both sides of the debate.
Serious discussions are taking place between House and Senate leadership on meaningful Background Checks. I have also been speaking to the NRA, and others, so that their very strong views can be fully represented and respected. Guns should not be placed in the hands of.....— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 9, 2019
....mentally ill or deranged people. I am the biggest Second Amendment person there is, but we all must work together for the good and safety of our Country. Common sense things can be done that are good for everyone!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 9, 2019
Twenty-two people died in the carnage in El Paso on Saturday - two of whom died from injuries on Monday - and another nine people were murdered in Dayton. On Monday morning, Trump tweeted about the possibility of “marrying” background check legislation to immigration reform. But, he didn't mention that proposal in his White House remarks a few hours later. Instead, he suggested he may pursue "red flag" laws, which would permit police officers to take firearms out of the hands of individuals they consider to be threats. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) plans to introduce such a measure.
While politicians argue over next steps, Trump visited both communities in mourning this week, meeting with lawmakers and hospital patients.