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DC – GUN POLITICS – Even with Dems gone impeachment-mad, leading on guns is winner for Trump

With House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the rest of the Democratic Party now determined to try to impeach President Trump, is there any reason for him to seek common ground with them on any issue? In the current political atmos­phere, the White House might well believe that bipartisanship is for suckers. That’s part of the reason why nothing has come of the president’s reported interest in expanding background checks on gun sales after last month’s mass shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio. Following these incidents, the White House appeared to recognize that most Americans, ­including Republicans, were firmly behind measures that would bring online and gun-show sales into the background-check system. Likewise, most Americans back so-called red-flag laws that keep firearms out of the hands of the dangerously mentally ill. Trump had previously telegraphed support for these ideas and even vowed to defy the National Rifle Association’s knee-jerk opposition to any sort of regulation, even those that involved only minimal inconvenience to gun buyers. Rather than pushing ahead with a measure that would have bipartisan support, the president delayed. The cautious rollout seems to have been sabotaged by the leak of a document stemming from a White House briefing of Republican senators, about a ­proposal to expand background checks. That provoked a massive pushback from the NRA this month, and the White House folded, disavowing the document and thus reinforcing the impression that the gun-rights lobby ­exercises veto power over ­administration policy.  [full article]

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