President Donald Trump held a stunning televised meeting with a bipartisan group of lawmakers on Wednesday, and signaled he was open a series of gun control measures in a move that left Democrats beaming and Republicans stunned.
The freewheeling meeting, broadcast live from the Cabinet Room, featured Trump embracing gun control legislation from expanded background checks to restricting gun sales to young adults.
Perhaps most remarkably, Trump even made a comment that sent Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the Democrat from California, into a fit of joy.
After Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) spoke about her desire to expand background checks with the aim of curbing domestic violence, Trump asked Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA) if he could add her proposal to his bipartisan bill with Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV).
“Dianne if you could add what you have also – and I think you can — into the bill,” Trump then suggested.
Well, as it turns out what Feinstein has is a ban assault weapons — a proposal that is anathema to Republican lawmakers and the NRA.
Feinstein’s response was positively giddy, and the Democrat pointed at Manchin and joked “Joe are you ready?”
“Joe can you do that?” Trump asked. “Can you add some of the things. I’ll help. Can you add what Amy and what Dianne have?”
“I’m going to say this,” Trump continued. “We’re going to get it passed.”
House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA), himself the victim of gun violence last year, next proposed a measure allowing concealed-carry permits to cross state lines — which Trump promptly dismissed.
“You’ll never get this passed if you add concealed carry to this,” the Republican president said.