Trump again appears to back away from gun background checks

Immediately after the carnage in El Paso and Dayton, Ohio, Trump said “there is a great appetite” for tightening background checks on people who buy firearms. But in recent days, Trump has focused in public remarks on the need to keep guns out of the hands of the mentally ill while emphasizing that the nation already has “very strong background checks right now” — positions that hew more closely to the views of the National Rifle Association.

Behind the scenes, Trump’s communication with key lawmakers, including Sen. Joe Manchin III, a moderate Democrat from West Virginia who has sought to develop bipartisan gun-control measures, has gone mostly cold, according to Capitol Hill aides, in part because Congress has left town for its summer recess…

“We’ve seen this movie before: President Trump, feeling public pressure in the immediate aftermath of a horrible shooting, talks about doing something meaningful to address gun violence, but inevitably, he backtracks in response to pressure from the NRA and the hard-right,” Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) said in a statement. “These retreats from President Trump are not only disappointing but also heartbreaking, particularly for the families of the victims of gun violence.”