DENVER (CBS4) – Gov. John Hickenlooper joined other governors at The White House on Monday to discuss school safety and guns.
President Donald Trump invited the state leaders following the deadly school shooting in Parkland, Florida where 17 students and teachers died.
The president told the governors he wants to take action to improve safety at schools.
“We don’t want sick people having the right to have a gun,” Trump said.
The president is pushing for stronger background checks, increased access to mental institutions and retribution as a deterrent for a would-be gunman.
“The bad guy has to understand that there’s a big price to pay if your mess around with our students,” he said.
The president is advocating for arming and training some school staff.
Washington’s governor, Jay Inslee, said that’s not sitting well with teachers in that state.
“I have listened to first grade teachers, and they don’t want to be pistol packing first grade teachers,” he said. “Now I just think this is a circumstance where we need to listen; that educators should educate, and they should not be foisted upon this responsibility of packing heat.”
Other governors spoke out about the success of programs already underway in their states to arm staff.
Florida’s governor, Rick Scott, says he’s not waiting for the federal government.
“We’re going to invest $500 million. We’re going to have a significant law enforcement presence in every public school in our state,” Scott said.
The president said he had lunch with NRA leaders this weekend, and told the governors not to worry about them.
“Half of you are so afraid of NRA. There is nothing to be afraid of, and you know if they’re not with you we have to fight them every once in a while,” the president said.