After a shooting in Florida that killed 17 people, the White house has said that President Donald Trump supports any efforts in the direction of enforcing federal background checks for gun control.
In what is being called the deadliest high school shooting in U.S. history, a former student of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, Nikolas Cruz is accused of murdering 17 people using an assault-style rifle.
Previous mass shootings in the country have also stirred nation-wide anger and calls for stricter gun control laws but with no results.
“While discussions are ongoing and revisions are being considered, the president is supportive of efforts to improve the federal background check system,” White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said in a statement.
The President, who visited survivors of the shooting and law enforcement officials is a strong supporter of gun rights and even won the endorsement of the National Rifle Association, a powerful gun lobby group, for his presidential campaign.
He earlier tweeted that the FBI had missed signs that the suspect was troubled because it was distracted with its probe into Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. election, which left many students angry. Although the FBI did acknowledge that it failed to act on a tip flagging concerns about the suspect.
While many Republicans are usually opposed to any measures to restrict gun ownership, citing the U.S. Constitution’s Second Amendment protection of the right to bear arms, former president Barack Obama did try to unsuccessfully pass a gun control legislation after a gunman killed 20 children and six adults in 2012.
Many students are using slogans like “NeverAgain” and assembling across the country in favor of strict gun laws. Students are planning a “March For Our Lives” in Washington on March 24 to call attention to school safety and ask lawmakers to enact gun control.
Trump is also scheduled to host a “listening session” with high school students and teachers.