In February last year, the president signed a bill to overturn Obama-era regulations that restricted people with severe mental problems from buying guns. Those restrictions had been put into place after the 2012 massacre of schoolchildren in Newtown, Connecticut, by a young man with a history of mental illness.

Before it was repealed, the rule had required the Social Security Administration to notify the FBI of any disability insurance recipients found mentally incapable of handling their finances. The individuals would then be added to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS)—and disqualified from buying guns. By signing the law, Trump made it easier for an estimated 75,000 mentally unstable people to buy weapons.

Through his presidency, Trump also removed more people from the NICS, effectively allowing them to buy guns: About 500,000 “fugitives from justice,” or people who have crossed state lines to avoid prosecution, were allowed to buy guns.

More recently, in his 2019 budget, the president proposed deep cuts to funding for background checks on gun purchasers.

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