Donald Trump has made his first move towards tightening regulations on guns after the Florida school shooting, announcing that he has directed the Justice Department to ban so-called “bump stocks” – which are accessories intended to replicate the function of fully automatic weapons on semiautomatic weapons.
President Trump said he has directed Attorney General Jeff Sessions to propose changes that would ban so-called bump stocks, which make it easier to fire rounds more quickly https://t.co/95EQZEIRbK pic.twitter.com/iKCTzIucxH
— CNN (@CNN) February 20, 2018
“I signed a memorandum directing the Attorney-General [Jeff Sessions] to propose regulations to ban all devices that turn legal weapons into machineguns,” Trump said at the White House on Tuesday.
New: Trump just said he signed a memo directing the Attorney General to propose a rule outlawing bump stocks, all devices “that turn legal weapons into machine guns.” He expects those regulations to be finalized “very soon.”
— Ali Vitali (@alivitali) February 20, 2018
It’s worth noting that bump stocks were actually not in use in the Florida shooting. The suspect in the attack, 19-year-old Nikolas Cruz, is alleged to have used a an AR-15-style rifle that he had purchased legally.
However, a bump stock was allegedly used in the Las Vegas shooting back in October, which left 59 people dead and 422 injured. at the time, Trump made some indication that he would ban the accessories.
When asked whether Trump would consider renewing the federal assault weapons ban which expired over ten years ago, White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said that “we haven’t closed the door on any front”.
She also said Trump was interested in making background checks more efficient, and implementing ways of improving the background check process.
The National Rifle Association, known for their extreme opposition to most forms of gun control legislation, have expressed that they support efforts to control or ban the use of bump stocks. It’s worth noting that they tend to be quite rare, and aren’t often involved in mass shootings.