DALLAS | Trump tells NRA, elect Republicans to save gun rights

DALLAS —Months after the horror of the Parkland school shootings in Florida, President Donald Trump stood before cheering members of the National Rifle Association on Friday and implored them to elect more Republicans to Congress to defend gun rights. Trump claimed that Democrats want to “outlaw guns” and said if the nation takes that drastic step, it might as well ban all vans and trucks because they are the new weapons for “maniac terrorists.” “We will never give up our freedom. We will live free and we will die free,” Trump said, as he sought to rally pro-gun voters for the 2018 congressional elections. “We’ve got to do great in ’18.” Activists energized by shootings at schools, churches and elsewhere are also focused on those elections. In the aftermath of the February school shootings at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, which left 17 dead and many more wounded, Trump had temporarily strayed from gun rights dogma. During a televised gun meeting with lawmakers in late February, he wagged his finger at a Republican senator and scolded him for being “afraid of the NRA,” declaring that he would stand up to the group and finally get results in quelling gun violence. But he later backpedaled on that tough talk. He was clearly back in the fold at the NRA’s annual convention, pledging that Americans’ Second Amendment right to bear arms will “never ever be under siege as long as I am your president.” Trump briefly referenced the Parkland shootings in […]

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