In Wake Of Florida Shooting, Trump Calls For New...
In the wake of the deadly school shooting in Florida on Feb. 14, President Trump is directing the Department of Justice to develop regulations to ban bump stocks.
"Just a few moments ago I signed a memorandum directing the AG to propose regulations to ban all devices that turn legal weapons into machine guns. I expect that these critical regulations will be finalized, Jeff, very soon," Trump said, referring to Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
"We can do more to protect our children. We must do more to protect our children," Trump said ahead of a Medal of Valor awards ceremony on Tuesday.
Shortly before the president made the announcement, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said that Trump did support "not having the use of bump stocks," but she declined to elaborate on any other gun measures that Trump might support going forward other than efforts to improve background checks.
Bump stocks are used to accelerate a gun's shooting rate.
While there have been no reports that the shooter in the Parkland, Fla., school shooting last week that killed 17 people used such a device, a shooter last October in Las Vegas who massacred 59 people and wounded hundreds others did use bump stocks.
The Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives has been undergoing a review of regulation of bump stocks since shortly after that Las Vegas shooting; a public comment period ended Jan 25. When the ATF last completed a review of bump stock classification in 2010, it concluded that the devices were not regulated under existing gun laws.
Justice Department spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores responded to the president's announcement on Tuesday in a statement saying, "The Department understands this is a priority for the President and has acted quickly to move through the rulemaking process. We look forward to the results of that process as soon as it is duly completed."
Many Republicans and even the powerful conservative lobby of the National Rifle Association have supported some regulatory action on bump stocks.
"The NRA believes that devices designed to allow semi-automatic rifles to function like fully automatic rifles should be subject to additional regulations," NRA leaders Wayne LaPierre and Chris Cox said last October, shortly after the Las Vegas shooting.