Donald Trump sells out the right on guns

If you think what happened in Wednesday’s meeting was a fluke or a misstatement, President Trump hit a lot of the same themes in a meeting with state-level officials the previous week. Maybe Ben Domenech is right and it was all just posturing for television that won’t result in actual legislation. “Trump cannot afford to cross the NRA, but he can talk about doing it, strut and brag in his way. And with a media that confuses politics with optics, he can get away with it.” Certainly, Trump made an effort to walk it all back the next evening—when the cameras weren’t running.

But the case for Trump was never that we could rely on him completely on policy details. The supposed selling point for Trump was that he would fight the left-leaning media and demolish its narratives. Instead, what he did Wednesday was to confirm all the essential parts of their narrative: that school shootings are an unprecedented crisis that requires extraordinary action, that the only way to end that crisis is to give up some of our rights and give more power to the government, and that Republicans who hesitate are cowards who don’t have the guts to stand up to the NRA.

That alone is a huge betrayal of Trump’s supporters. But, hey, what did you expect? You knew quite well he was a snake before you let him in.

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