|Mired in scandal and in the wake of two weeks of public impeachment hearings that have further exposed the depth of his corruption and criminality, Donald Trump heads to Sunrise, Florida for a “homecoming rally” this evening. The president can be expected to frantically vent over the impeachment inquiry by spouting a litany of lies, false attacks on Democrats, fake accomplishments, and outrageous, offensive, racist rhetoric. Trump, however, is likely to stay silent on one particular top issue casting a shadow over his Sunrise rally – which will take place less than 15 miles from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School – his completely abandoned promises to act on gun violence.
Following the tragic mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas in Parkland in February of 2018, the president claimed to call for comprehensive gun violence prevention legislation only to completely abandon promised action on gun violence little over a week later. In August of this year, after mass shootings in Dayton, Ohio and El Paso, Texas, Trump again claimed to support stronger background checks and promised consideration of red flag laws. As the Washington Post reported, however, by the start of this month Trump had “abandoned the idea of releasing proposals to combat gun violence.” Furthermore, the Post reported that “[the] president no longer asks about the issue” and that “[four] White House officials said there haven’t been substantive discussions in weeks” on gun violence prevention with “discussions between the White House and the [NRA having] gone silent in a sign that the powerful gun lobby is no longer concerned the White House will act.”
Nearly 1,200 children were killed by guns in the year immediately following the Marjory Stoneman Douglas shooting and there have been over 600 mass shootings (2018 and 2019) in the United States since. Multiple gun violence prevention bills passed by the House this year have languished in the Republican-controlled Senate.
“Amidst all his ranting and raving, Donald Trump’s record of abandoned promises to address gun violence will speak volumes about his cowardice as he campaigns in the shadow of Parkland,” said American Bridge spokesperson Jeb Fain. “The president’s refusal to act on this life or death issue is a shameless betrayal of Parkland and countless communities across the country that have paid, and to continue to pay, the immeasurable cost of inaction.”