- Carlos Barria/Reuters
- House Speaker Paul Ryan said he personally supports President Donald Trump’s idea to arm teachers “as a parent,” but doesn’t think Congress should pass a bill mandating the practice.
- “That is really a question for local government, for local school boards, for local states,” Ryan said at a press conference on Tuesday.
House Speaker Paul Ryan on Tuesday said he doesn’t think Congress should take up legislation related to President Donald Trump’s idea to arm more teachers and school personnel in the wake of the Florida high school shooting.
Ryan said the idea had merit and he supported it personally, but he said Congress shouldn’t meddle in local affairs.
“That is really a question for local government, for local school boards, for local states,” Ryan told reporters. “As a parent myself and as a citizen I think it’s a good idea, but as speaker of the House I think we need respect federalism and respect local jurisdictions.”
Trump took up the idea of arming more teachers soon after the shooting in Parkland, Florida, and he has repeatedly called for “adept teachers” to carry firearms to prevent future shootings. The idea has received a significant amount of pushback from teachers, policy experts, and lawmakers.
On Saturday, Trump suggested the proposal must be left up to the states to decide.
In terms of other gun control measures, Ryan reiterated his stance that the focus should be on preventing people that should not have guns from getting them, as well as closing loopholes in the background check system.
“We shouldn’t be banning guns for law-abiding citizens, we should be focusing on making sure that citizens who should not get guns in the first place do not get those guns,” Ryan said.