President Donald Trump says the deadly mass shooting at a Florida high school is the top issue he wants to discuss with the nation’s governors.
Under pressure to act to stem gun violence on school grounds, Trump planned to solicit input from the state chief executives during meetings Monday at the White House.
The governors are in Washington for their annual winter meeting.
But socializing was the focus Sunday night as Trump and first lady Melania Trump hosted the governors for an annual black-tie ball.
In brief remarks before dinner beneath dimmed lights in the State Dining Room, Trump said the governors are “very, very special people.”
“The job you do is really incredible. It’s not easy, but we’re very proud of you and we’re very proud to have you here,” he said as tall candles flickered and bouquets of hydrangeas adorned an assortment of round and oblong dinner tables.
Previewing today’s talks, Trump said they would also discuss the economy “and many other things.” Seventeen students and teachers were killed in Valentine’s Day shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, sparking a public outcry for new gun-control measures as well as action to improve school safety.
“We’ll be talking about Parkland and the horrible event that took place last week,” Trump said.
“That will be one of the subjects. We’ll make it first on our list.” Trump thanked Florida Gov. Rick Scott, a close political ally who attended the ball, and told everyone he’s “doing a great job.”
The president also boasted about the economy, saying numbers that weren’t so good under his predecessor are improving under his leadership.
“You’re going to see some numbers coming up over the next year, the likes of which we haven’t seen in our country for many, many years,” Trump said.