Home / General / When you’re too ignorant to know how insane orthodox Republican policy on guns is

When you’re too ignorant to know how insane orthodox Republican policy on guns is


Trump’s total ignorance on policy can instructively lead him in many directions, most of them awful, but occasionally he will say something vaguely sensible because he doesn’t know that Republicans believe in some incredibly stupid and evil shit:

One of the most extraordinary moments of Donald J. Trump’s presidency was an hourlong meeting with U.S. senators in the aftermath of the school shooting in Parkland, Fla., in which he forcefully argued for a litany of gun safety measures that the National Rifle Association had long opposed.

Mr. Trump’s support for gun control measures — which he unrolled on live television from the White House on Feb. 28, 2018 — astonished lawmakers from both parties. But the next day, N.R.A. officials met with Mr. Trump without any cameras or reporters in the room, and he immediately backed down.

That apparent surrender to N.R.A. pressure came to sum up Mr. Trump’s record on gun control in the eyes of his critics.

Unbeknownst to the public, however, Mr. Trump again pushed inside the White House for significant new gun-control measures more than a year later, after a pair of gruesome shooting sprees that unfolded over 13 hours. Those discussions have not previously been reported.

On Aug. 3, 2019, a far-right gunman killed 23 people at a Walmart store in El Paso. Early the next morning, a man shot and killed nine people outside a bar in Dayton, Ohio. Both assailants used semiautomatic rifles.

At the White House the next day, Mr. Trump was so shaken by the weekend’s violence that he questioned aides about a specific potential solution and made clear he wanted to take action, according to three people present during the conversation.

“What are we going to do about assault rifles?” Mr. Trump asked.

“Not a damn thing,” Mick Mulvaney, his acting chief of staff, replied.

Trump wanting to ban assault rifles because there is indeed no possible reason to allow civilians to own them illustrates the nature of Republican policy. What happened next illustrates how clueless and naïve the OUTFLANKING! crowd were — you can cherry pick some tossed-off rhetorical departures from Republican orthodoxy but as long as he was a Republican president none of them were ever going to happen.

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