The frustration stemmed from a Tuesday phone call held between Donald Trump and longtime NRA chief executive Wayne LaPierre. According to early reports, Trump had given LaPierre assurances that he would not be supporting efforts to pass universal background checks legislation. Behind closed doors, White House officials were caught off guard by those early characterizations which—according to three administration officials and a source close to the president—they continue to privately blame on the NRA.
“[In the White House], it was widely seen as a dick move,” one of these officials, who deals regularly with advocacy organizations and gun-lobby envoys, said.
A senior White House official insisted to The Daily Beast on Tuesday night that “the call [between Trump and LaPierre] occurred” but quibbled with the technicalities of what the president did, or didn’t, reportedly take off the table. “The president has not mentioned supporting universal background checks,” the official said. “Meaningful background checks remain on the table.”