WASHINGTON (CBSNewYork/AP) — President Donald Trump will hold a school safety meeting at the White House on Thursday.
Trump held a freewheeling, televised meeting with lawmakers at the White House Wednesday that stretched for an hour and he rejected both his party’s incremental approach and its strategy that has stalled action on gun legislation.
Early Thursday morning, the president tweeted that “Many ideas, some good & some not so good,” emerged from the meeting.
He said “Background Checks a big part of conversation” and “Gun free zones are proven targets of killers.”
“After many years, a Bill should emerge. Respect 2nd Amendment,” the president said.
Giving hope to Democrats, he said Wednesday that he favored a “comprehensive” approach to addressing violence such as February’s shooting at a Florida high school, although he offered no details.
Instead, Trump again voiced support for expanded background checks. He endorsed increased school security and more mental health resources, and he reaffirmed his support for raising the age to 21 for purchasing some firearms.
Trump mentioned arming teachers, and said his administration, not Congress, would ban “bump-stock” devices that enable guns to fire like automatic weapons with an executive order.
“We can’t wait and play games and nothing gets done,” Trump said as he opened the session with 17 House and Senate lawmakers. “We want to stop the problems.”
Trump raised eyebrows by suggesting that law enforcement officials should be able to confiscate people’s firearms without a court order to prevent potential tragedies.
“Take the guns first, go through due process second,” he suggested.
Trump’s call for stronger background checks has been resisted by Republicans and the NRA. Republicans are leaning toward modest legislation designed to improve the background check system.
Trump made clear he was looking for more and accused lawmakers of being “petrified” of the gun lobby.
“The reason I had lunch with the NRA on Sunday is I told them, ‘fellas, you gotta do something,'” Trump said. “And I agree, they do have great power. They have great power over you people. They have less power over me.”
The White House is expected to reveal more on the president’s plans for school safety this week. That announcement will likely include goals for background checks and bump stocks, though whether age restrictions will be specifically addressed remains unclear, according to an administration official who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss private conversations.
(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)