Former President Donald Trump said Friday at the National Rifle Association annual conference that he would be their "loyal friend" in 2024.
The conference took place in Indianapolis, where Trump said during comments that he "saved" the Second Amendment to the Constitution during his first term in office and that he can do it again if re-elected.
He called himself the “most pro-gun, pro-Second Amendment” president ever to serve.
“With your support, in 2024, I will be your loyal friend and fearless champion once again as the 47th president of the United States,” he said.
Trump called for federal legislation that affirms and strengthens people's right to defend themselves with a firearm and for the implementation of penalties for "prosecutorial abuse."
He also wants carry permit "reciprocity" laws, so that those who have a carry permit in their state could then carry anywhere in the U.S. Such legislation was passed by the Republican House in 2017 but never made it to the Senate.
“Just like your driver’s license or your marriage license, your Second Amendment must apply across state lines,” Trump said.
“Gun-grabbing bureaucrats” are “persecuting” legal gun owners rather than going after criminals, Trump said.
“We have to go after them and stop worrying about somebody that will never hurt anybody with a gun, just wants the gun for protection or whatever,” he added.
Trump did acknowledge the recent school shooting that killed six adults and children in Nashville, Tennessee that has Democrats clamoring for more restrictions on guns.
"Our hearts were shattered by news of the monstrous attack on a Christian elementary school in Nashville," Trump said. "We wrap those beautiful families in our love and we lift them up in our prayers."
But Trump blamed the shooting and others at schools around the country on Democrats, who are blocking a school safety law trumpeted by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and other Republicans.
"Its a scandal and a tragedy that year after year, Democrats in Washington continue to hold common-sense school safety measures hostage to their radical gun control agenda, which in virtually all cases would do nothing to prevent attacks by demented and disturbed individuals," he added.
This is not a gun problem. This is a mental health problem. This is a social problem. This is a cultural problem. This is a spiritual problem," he argued.