AB Stoddard: Republicans Won't Act on Gun Control Unless Trump Insists on It
Following last week's deadly shooting at a Florida high school, President Donald Trump suggested he is open to some gun control proposals, including raising the minimum age to purchase AR-15s, banning bump stocks and instituting a tougher background check system.
I will be strongly pushing Comprehensive Background Checks with an emphasis on Mental Health. Raise age to 21 and end sale of Bump Stocks! Congress is in a mood to finally do something on this issue - I hope!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 22, 2018
During his CPAC address on Friday, Trump briefly mentioned "strengthening" background checks while discussing gun violence, but he primarily stressed the importance of hardening soft targets like schools by allowing teachers to carry weapons.
On "Special Report" on Friday, RealClearPolitics Associate Editor A.B. Stoddard said Trump is not making it clear what he wants, and he's going to have to do so if he wants Republican lawmakers to go along with him.
"Until and unless he wants to actually push for something -- like a new age restriction -- he's not making it clear what he's really willing to give on," Stoddard said. "They are not going to give unless pushed by this president. It is on him to lead the Republicans. They're in an election year, and they are not going to do this unless he insists on it."
Byron York, chief political correspondent for The Washington Examiner, thought it was notable what Trump didn't say during his CPAC speech.
"The NRA doesn't like it, but the president has specifically said in the last couple of days that he does like the idea," York said. "But he said nothing about it out of this hour-and-14-minute speech."
Watch more above.