Article: White House eyes September action on gun control. (2019). The White House is in talks with lawmakers from both parties on gun control proposals, hoping for a plan of action before September.
Administration officials and senior staffers in both chambers are in early discussions about which bills are likely to see movement, and which ones the White House might support. Trump has publicly praised the idea of strengthening background checks, following pressure to act after back-to-back mass shootings earlier this month in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio.
Michael Hammond, legislative counsel for Gun Owners of America, said his group has been in touch with the offices of GOP senators, warning them: “If you think that you’re going to win the next election by destroying your base, you better think again.” Hammond said he thinks Trump is already backing off from a push for universal background checks, and would propose something smaller, like an enhanced version of the “Fix NICS” law improving the reporting of information to the existing background check system. Congress passed that bill last year.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), who would be expected to hold a floor vote on any potential deal, is seen as a major question mark in the effort to advance gun legislation. He has long opposed gun control measures, though he cracked the door open slightly this month. The Kentucky Republican said background checks and “red flag” laws to help keep guns away from mentally ill people would be “two items that for sure will be front and center as we see what we can come together on and pass.”
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