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Murphy: Trump’s support for background check bill shows gun politics ‘shifting rapidly’

Murphy: Trump’s support for background check bill shows gun politics ‘shifting rapidly’
© Greg Nash

Sen. Chris MurphyChristopher (Chris) Scott MurphyFive things to watch for in deteriorating US-Saudi relations Senators warn Trump that Saudi relationship is on the line Overnight Defense — Presented by The Embassy of the United Arab Emirates — Missing journalist strains US-Saudi ties | Senators push Trump to open investigation | Trump speaks with Saudi officials | New questions over support for Saudi coalition in Yemen MORE (D-Conn.) said Monday that President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump: 'I don't trust everybody in the White House' JPMorgan CEO withdraws from Saudi conference Trump defends family separations at border MORE’s newfound support for his background check legislation shows that the politics surrounding gun violence are “shifting rapidly” following yet another deadly mass shooting last week.

But Murphy, who has unsuccessfully pushed for gun control measures since the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in his state in 2012, emphasized that the background check bill is just one part of the equation to reducing gun violence.

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement earlier Monday that Trump supports a bill co-authored by Murphy and Sen. John CornynJohn CornynTrump defends 0B US arms sale to Saudi Arabia Florida politics play into disaster relief debate O’Rourke faces pivotal point in Texas battle with Cruz MORE (R-Texas) that would bolster the federal background check system, though she emphasized that “discussions are ongoing and revisions are being considered” to the measure.

The comments came five days after a gunman killed 17 people and injured more than a dozen others at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla.

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The bipartisan measure is narrowly focused on background checks; it would require states and federal agencies to produce plans to report offenses that would bar people from passing a check needed to purchase a firearm.

It also reiterates that federal agencies must report all violations to the National Instant Criminal Background Check system and creates new financial incentives for states to report information.

Cornyn and Murphy unveiled the measure last November in response to a mass shooting in Texas, but it was never passed into law. It is the rare gun legislation supported by the National Rifle Association.

It remains unclear whether the president would back more sweeping gun bills.

Efforts to ban bump stocks following a deadly mass shooting at a Las Vegas music festival last year stalled in Congress, despite support from Trump and other Republicans.

But a number of states and cities have passed their own laws to prohibit the sale and possession of the devices, which make a semi-automatic weapon fire like an automatic one.

— Jordan Fabian contributed