PARKLAND (AFP) – US President Donald Trump surprised lawmakers by embracing gun control measures that are tougher than usually supported by his party.
The president voiced his support for expanded background checks, more secure schools, curbs on the ability of the mentally ill to buy firearms and raising to 21 the age for buying certain guns.
Mr Trump’s comments came as students of the Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland returned to the school two weeks after a mass shooting by a former student killed 17 people.
Since the carnage, students have been lobbying politicians for stricter gun controls both in their home state of Florida and in Washington.
Republican lawmakers, with majorities in the US Congress and the Florida state legislature, have been cool on bringing in major reforms on the sales of firearms.
But Mr Trump upped the pressure on lawmakers to get to work during a bipartisan meeting at the White House on Wednesday.