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In NRA speech, Trump does not back any gun reforms but calls for security overhaul at schools

The NRA convention is going on as scheduled this weekend despite the shooting at an elementary school in the South Texas town of Uvalde days earlier that left 19 children and two adults dead.

Trump and other Republicans who spoke at the convention — including Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem — acknowledged the Uvalde shooting but also signaled in their speeches that GOP officials are not willing to consider new gun restrictions.

The nation’s schism over guns was on display in Houston. Inside the George R. Brown Convention Center, thousands of attendees browsed through an expansive hall in which vendors offered what an NRA sign referred to as “14 acres of guns and gear.”

Outside, thousands of protesters — including groups that have formed in the wake of other mass shootings — chanted, “NRA, go away,” and “shame, shame,” as they vowed to push for new restrictions on assault rifles and other gun control measures.

Trump began his speech Friday by reading the names of those killed at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde on Tuesday.
He made no acknowledgment of the missteps officers made in Uvalde, hours after law enforcement officials there acknowledged that they had waited too long to breach the classroom where a gunman was shooting children and teachers.

Instead, the former President slammed Democrats and others who have called for new gun laws, saying, “There’s always a grotesque effort by some in our society to use the suffering of others to advance their own extreme political agenda.”

Trump also called for a “top-to-bottom security overhaul at schools across our country

That, he said, should include “strong exterior fencing,” metal detectors at school entrances, and classroom doors that should be “hardened” and could be locked from the inside “and closed to intruders from the outside.”

He also called for every school to have “an armed police officer or a resource officer on duty at all times” and for allowing “highly trained teachers to safely and discreetly” carry concealed weapons.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, who addressed the convention in pre-recorded remarks, said at a news conference Friday in Uvalde that he is demanding a full accounting of what happened during the school shooting, saying he had been initially “misled” about certain information he was given by law enforcement officials leading the investigation.

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