Freshman Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) and six other House Republicans have proposed legislation that would spend $30 million a year on federal grants to help put police officers in schools across the country.
The Protect America's Schools Act is a reaction to the December shooting at a Connecticut elementary school that left 20 children dead. After that shooting, National Rifle Association President Wayne LaPierre suggested that children in schools be protected by armed guards, and Meadows's bill would appear to be a step in that direction.
"According to a recent Gallup poll, 53 percent of Americans believe that increasing police presence at schools would be very effective in preventing future tragedies," Meadows said last week. "After speaking to local law enforcement, superintendents and principals in my district, I believe this is the best path forward."
Meadows said this spending would be offset with unspent funds from the operations budget of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
Meadows said his bill is "bipartisan" because the program was first proposed under the Clinton administration. However, the bill has only Republican cosponsors: Reps. Gus Bilirakis (Fla.), William Cassidy (La.), David Joyce (Ohio), Cynthia Lummis (Colo.) Rich Nugent (Fla.) and Tom Rooney (Fla.).