Following last month’s school shooting in Parkland, Florida, President Donald Trump proposed bold action to improve school safety, yet the set of proposals the White House intends to endorse leaves reforms up to states.
Trump is expected to endorse only two bills he had previously advocated for: the FIX NICS Bill, which calls for making improvements to the nation’s background check system, and the STOP School Violence Act, which would provide grants to states in developing anti-school-violence plans.
The White House is additionally calling for an audit and review of the FBI tip line, as well as for a review of expanding mental-health programs and patient-privacy laws, ABC News writes. The White House is also calling on states to pass risk-protection orders. These would allow law enforcement to remove weapons from individuals who pose a threat to themselves or others and temporarily prevent them from purchasing new firearms.
These proposals are to be released on Monday with no event planned around the occasion.
A senior official further said President Trump supports the FIX NICS Bill as a matter of practicality.
“The President wants to improve our background check system – we want to act now, we don’t want to wait. We believe that this legislation is important and useful in improving the background check system and can pass virtually immediately if there’s not obstruction in Congress,” the official noted, adding that additional action on background checks would be discussed “in the commission,” referring to the federal commission led by Education Secretary Betsy Devos.
Trump had in recent weeks called for raising the minimum age on purchasing firearms to 21 across the board, but now seems to be backing down. The administration said that’s a debate for states and the Devos-led commission.
“Regarding the age, that’s obviously a state-based discussion that’s going on right now, and that’s something that the commission will look at, get information from the states about what they’re considering, and what’s impactful and useful,” a senior official said.
Regarding Trump’s proposal to arm teachers, the only action the White House is expected to take is helping interested localities in arming and training qualified individuals.