NRA not backing down on guns

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NRA CEO Wayne LaPierre says his organisation is the true protector of American schoolchildren.

No love was lost between the NRA's executive vice-president and liberal gun control supporters as LaPierre gave his speech at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) near Washington, DC on Thursday.

Online backlash heightened this week after NRA leaders attacked the Democratic Party and gun control activists, saying they were exploiting the Florida shooting.

LaPierre also bashed Democrats as well as the media.

LaPierre reiterated that there should be armed security in every school, questioning if Americans love their jewelry and money, in stores and banks with security guards, more than children.

Peterson resigned after being suspended without pay. He was quoted by the Miami Herald.

Rubio expressed support for all three on live TV as survivors of the Florida school shooting grilled him. He also speculated about mass gun confiscation.

LAPIERRE: They care more about control and more of it. "The people that we put into power who should be working for us, they have us working for them", said Emma Gonzalez, a senior at Marjory Stoneman Douglas, on CBS News' "Face The Nation." "But the NRA, the NRA does care". Loesch often discusses them when she argues for maintaining relaxed gun control laws.

LaPierre, who has become the face of the NRA, sharply criticized liberal Democrats and others Thursday in a fiery speech to a group of conservatives in suburban Maryland.

"What we're looking for is solutions that don't ban a class of firearms for all individuals but ban all weapons for certain individuals who are identified as threats to public safety", White House spokesman Raj Shah said. He pointed out that Trump had already taken action to regulate bump stocks this week and in meetings with governors next week, the White House "will make the safety of America's schools and America's students our top national priority".

"We share a goal of safe schools, safe neighborhoods and a safe country", LaPierre said.

"If that's true, armed security makes us less safe, let's just go ahead and remove it from everywhere".

Terre Kroeger, a Republican and NRA member from Maumee, Ohio, said she supported raising the federal age limit for gun purchases to 20 from 18 years old.

"Active shooter drills is a very negative thing, have to be honest with you", Mr Trump said, "I'd much rather have a hardened school".

The NRA was an early backer of Trump, and spent $30 million supporting his candidacy, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. A spokesman later said Trump was speaking specifically about semi-automatic weapons.

On the first day of CPAC, the NRA had an uninterrupted hour to offer its response to Parkland - and respond it did.

The notion of arming teachers at USA public schools, which are largely governed by states, local councils and school boards, has been raised by some politicians in the past but has been dismissed by many critics as fraught with danger.

NRA spokeswoman Dana Loesch also addressed the CPAC conference, accusing the news media of ignoring the N.R.A.'s viewpoint and cashing in on the deaths of students. "They look for gun-free zones because, believe it or not, they don't want to get killed". "By providing tools and resources created to help schools identify potential security vulnerabilities, as well as the funding to implement necessary security improvements, the program helps remove the barriers to information and/or funding that have previously slowed progress in making our schools more secure", Brantley said. He provided little detail of any specific policy proposals, however.

The NRA has a vast political war chest and a president who views it as a loyal ally.

"Arming teachers is inane and insane - a sure path to reckless and panicky shooting, gun theft, and other deadly dangers".