President Donald Trump blamed the mass shooting in Sutherland Springs, Texas, on mental illness.
During his trip to Tokyo, Japan, Trump said of the latest U.S. massacre:
I think that mental health is your problem here… We have a lot of mental health problems in our country as do other countries. But this isn’t a guns situation. We could go into it, but it’s a little bit soon to go into it… This is a mental health problem at the highest level.
In February, Trump rolled back an Obama-era regulation that made the Social Security Administration report people with psychiatric disabilities to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System. The purpose behind the regulation was to make it harder for mentally ill people to get guns, noted NBC News.
President Obama pushed for the regulation in a 2013 after a mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, which left 26 people dead.
The Republican-controlled House and Senate passed the new bill, H.J. Res 40, to end the Obama-era regulation, and Trump quietly signed the bill.
The National Rifle Association (NRA) “applauded” Trump, and claimed “marks a new era for law-abiding gun owners, as we now have a president who respects and supports our arms.”