clock menu more-arrow no yes

Trump NRA speech: how to watch and what to expect

The president is speaking at the NRA’s first annual meeting since the Parkland, Florida, shooting.

President Donald Trump will soon speak at the National Rifle Association’s annual meeting in Dallas.

The NRA meeting is a big event for gun owners and supporters of gun rights every year, but it’s getting increased attention this year because it’s the NRA’s first meeting since the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, on February 14, which killed 17 people, sparking a new push for gun control that culminated in the massive March for Our Lives.

In the weeks following the shooting, Trump’s positions on gun policy were all over the place. In his first speech, he failed to mention gun laws at all. Then he threw support behind some mild measures, including banning bump stocks and slightly strengthening background checks. Shortly after, in a surprising meeting with lawmakers, Trump veered onto ground that even Democrats don’t typically wander onto — calling for expanded background checks, suggesting that some people should have their guns seized without any due process, criticizing a Republican legislator for fearing the NRA, and entertaining a full assault weapons ban.

Since then, he appears to have reverted back to support only for very moderate ideas and a proposal to arm teachers — a policy that the evidence suggests could make school shootings more likely.

Trump’s support for weak gun laws is expected to continue at his NRA speech on Friday, in which he’ll be talking to some of the country’s most ardent supporters of gun rights. At last year’s NRA meeting, Trump declared, “You came through for me, and I am going to come through for you.”

How to watch Trump’s NRA speech

When: Friday, May 4. Trump is expected to begin speaking around 1:45 pm Eastern time.

Where: The speech will likely air on all major news networks, but the White House will also stream it on its YouTube channel. (The White House’s video is embedded above.)

For more on America’s gun problem, read Vox’s explainer.