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Donald Trump announced on social media his plans to meet with National Rifle Association officials to discuss potential policy that would restrict those on the national “no fly list” from purchasing firearms, in light of the mass shooting early Sunday in Orlando.
I will be meeting with the NRA, who has endorsed me, about not allowing people on the terrorist watch list, or the no fly list, to buy guns.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 15, 2016
The presumptive Republican presidential nominee’s announcement came amid growing calls for gun control from President Obama, Hillary Clinton and Democratic lawmakers. Passions on the issue have run so high that Democratic House members walked out of chambers in the middle of a call for silence for the at least 49 dead that resulted from terrorist Omar Mateen’s shooting spree.
It was reported that last November Trump supported a gun ban for anyone on a terror watch list, and his tweet seems to mirror that position. Mateen was on the FBI’s terror watch list during its investigations into his background.
Following the tragedy at the Orlando gay nightclub, the president said, “Those same people who we don’t allow to fly could go into a store right now in the U.S. and buy a firearm and there’s nothing that we can do to stop them.”
So far, the NRA has rejected any added restrictions on firearm purchases, stating that the tragedy was a terrorist problem — not a gun problem.
Sticking to its guns, it tweeted:
Happy to meet @realdonaldtrump. Our position is no guns for terrorists—period. Due process & right to self-defense for law-abiding Americans
— NRA (@NRA) June 15, 2016
The important words here are “due process” — that is, notice given to the person under investigation and a hearing provided so that the one being investigated can state his case.
Trump and the gun rights giant has already butted heads on the idea of a “no buy list” on the bases of lack of due process.
“The NRA’s position on this issue has not changed,” NRA Institute for Legislative Action executive director Chris Cox said in a statement on Wednesday.”The NRA believes that terrorists should not be allowed to purchase or possess firearms, period. Anyone on a terror watch list who tries to buy a gun should be thoroughly investigated by the FBI and the sale delayed while the investigation is ongoing. If an investigation uncovers evidence of terrorist activity or involvement, the government should be allowed to immediately go to court, block the sale, and arrest the terrorist.”
U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson proposed something not quite as draconian — that the FBI be notified whenever someone on its watch list purchases a firearm.
“We’re not saying: don’t sell guns to someone just because they were investigated,” the Florida Democrat said in a statement. “But having a system in place that alerts the FBI if someone they once investigated is suddenly trying to purchase multiple assault weapons is just common sense.”
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