Your Opinions: Congress was elected to legislate, not cower before Trump


"The American people know this is a highly charged political moment but they haven't sent us here to stage pitch battles or score political points", McConnell, R-Ky., said.

The hundreds of mass shootings which take place each year-including three high-profile attacks in the last month-have left the majority of of US residents living in fear that they or their loved ones could be among the next victims of the violent epidemic that lawmakers refuse to address year after year. The current Senate, with its Republican majority huddled behind McConnell's obstructionism, is a cynical graveyard where progress and the balance of power go to die.

Democratic Senator Chris Murphy, a leading gun control advocate, issued a statement on Monday saying that "time is running short" to strike a deal on a background check bill that could pass Congress.

An ABC-Washington Post poll indicated Monday most Americans support expanded background checks for gun buyers and allowing police to seize weapons from troubled individuals - and that support crosses party and demographic lines.

"I'm hoping that really happens", said Schachter. "If and when the president provides direction on the next steps, I'm sure that will be communicated out pretty directly".

We need to judge our elected officials by what they do, not just what they say when it's convenient.

"The President needs to step up here and set some guidelines for what he would do", said Sen.

Ueland said Trump and his team are deeply engaged.

Republicans will attempt to totally fund Trump's wall request, stated Sen.

House Democrats aren't waiting on a deal with the White House. But he did note that the administration has received input from "across the ideological spectrum, from interested groups on the outside, as well as officeholders, governors and the like". He too is working on gun legislation.

"You now have a historic opportunity to save lives simply by indicating your support for H.R. 8, the House-passed universal bipartisan background check legislation currently being blocked by Leader McConnell and the Republican majority in the Senate", they wrote.

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"We're under discussion about what to do on the gun issue", McConnell said on the Hugh Hewitt radio show.

Toomey, who said he has spoken several times with Trump over Congress' summer break, said the president has been more consistent in his support for expanding background checks than people give him credit for.

But guns top the Democrats' immediate to-do list.

Even on legislation linked to mass shootings, Hoagland said lawmakers will likely encounter many roadblocks.

"This bill is common sense", Schumer said. "But given the agreement reached in the recent [budget deal] that says no 'poison pills, ' unless leaders and the president agree, this could become a real problem for GOP leaders and the president".

White House officials said last week the measures might include expediting the death penalty for mass shooters.

"There are a lot of members very upset about it", Lowey said. "Everybody in the White House is clearly improvising day to day".

Republicans, some Democrats and the gun lobby have fought off such attempts as a violation of the U.S. Constitution's Second Amendment providing the right to bear arms.

Eight months later, the president has told staff he wants to avoid a repeat of a shutdown that would be blamed on him and Republicans.

During his first remarks made on the Senate floor after returning from recess, McConnell made no mention of gun control legislation. Ueland signaled the president is inclined to sign it. "Look at the number of incidents that occurred while we were away", he said.