Trump Backs Effort to Improve Federal Background Checks For Guns

 

The White House says President Donald Trump "is supportive of efforts to improve the federal background check system," for gun purchases less than a week after a school shooting killed 17 people.

President Trump reportedly spoke with Republican Texas Senator John Cornyn over the weekend about a bill he sponsored last fall with Connecticut Democrat Chris Murphy. The bill would have strengthened how state and federal governments report offenses that could keep people from buying a gun. 

Students, teachers, and activists have been urging President Trump to take action on guns after last week's shooting, saying the time for waiting is over. 

So far, Trump's only action on guns as president has been to undo an Obama-era law aimed at keeping guns out of the hands of severely mentally ill people. Trump signed a measure last year that nixed a regulation that required the Social Security Administration to disclose who requested mental health benefits quarterly. The bill required the SSA to disclose to the FBI people who a) were receiving full disability benefits because of a mental illness and couldn't work and b) they were unable to manage their own benefits, thus needing the help of a third party to do so. 

It's unclear whether that regulation would have avoided last week's school shooting. 

Cornyn's bill didn't get far last fall when it was first introduce and there's no word on whether it will be it will be taken up by the Senate and voted on. 

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