White House Backs Away From Redlines In Gun Control Debate

REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Saagar Enjeti White House Correspondent

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders backed away Friday from committing President Donald Trump to any major demands in the ongoing debate over legislation to restrict access to firearms.

Trump has previously expressed support for universal background checks and raising the minimum purchasing age for a firearm to 21, much to the consternation of the National Rifle Association. His support for many of these measures comes as a bipartisan group of lawmakers attempts to craft legislation in the wake of a shooting at a Florida high school which killed 17 children.

Sanders, speaking to reporters at the White House, refused to commit Trump to any specific proposal except support for legislation that strengthens the national criminal background check system. On universal background checks, Sanders said “universal means something different to a lot of people. He certainly wants to focus and improve on the background check system.”

She also clarified Trump’s position on raising the minimum age saying “conceptually, he still supports raising the age to 21. But he also knows there’s not a lot of broad support for that. But that’s something he would support.”

“I think he thinks it would probably have more potential in the states than it would at the federal level,” she added.

Trump dined with the leadership of the NRA Thursday night who have opposed many of these measures.

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