President Trump called National Rifle Association executive Wayne LaPierre on Tuesday to reassure him he wasn’t hedging on background check legislation anymore: the whole ordeal was off the table, according to a new report in the Atlantic.
In the immediate aftermath of mass shootings in El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio earlier this month Trump told reporters that he wanted to work with Congress to pass bipartisan legislation on “meaningful” background checks. While a White House official told the Atlantic that “meaningful” background checks — as opposed to universal — were still being considered, Trump reportedly told LaPierre not to fret about the issue.
“He was cementing his stance that we already have background checks and that he’s not waffling on this anymore,” a former senior White House official told the Atlantic. “He doesn’t want to pursue it.”
Trump also reportedly told LaPierre that he would focus instead on “increasing funding” for mental health care and pushing attorneys general to prosecute gun violence as a federal crime, according to the ex-White House source.