Donald Trump on Monday walked back his suggestion that clubgoers should be allowed to arm themselves with firearms, a controversial concept he floated after the terrorist attack last week in Orlando, Florida.
The presumptive Republican presidential nominee wrote on Twitter that his support for the proposition was taken out of context.
“When I said that if, within the Orlando club, you had some people with guns, I was obviously talking about additional guards or employees,” Trump wrote.
After high-profile terrorist attacks, Trump has repeatedly spoken in favor of allowing patrons at nightclubs and bars to carry concealed weapons.
Trump told supporters at a rally in Texas last week that armed people with concealed weapons would have been able to stop the Orlando gunman, who killed 49 people at a gay nightclub before dying in a shootout with the police.
“If we had people, where the bullets were going in the opposite direction, right smack between the eyes of this maniac,” Trump said. “If some of those wonderful people had guns strapped to their waist, strapped to their ankle, and this son of a b—- comes out and starts shooting, and one of the people in that room happened to have [a gun] and goes ‘boom.’ You know what folks, that would have been a beautiful, beautiful sight.”
Trump made similar comments after the deadly terrorist attacks in Paris in November.
Trump’s tweet on Monday came a day after even some of the nation’s top gun-rights advocates distanced themselves from the real-estate mogul.
In an interview on “This Week” on Sunday, National Rife Association executive Chris Cox said that people who were drinking should not be wielding firearms.
“No one thinks that people should go into a nightclub drinking and carrying firearms,” Cox said. “That defies common sense. It also defies the law.”
On “Face The Nation,” NRA CEO Wayne LaPierre echoed Cox’s reservations about Trump’s comments.
“I don’t think you should have firearms where people are drinking,” LaPierre said on Sunday. “But I will tell you this. Everybody, every American needs to start having a security plan. We need to be able to protect ourselves, because they’re coming. And they’re going for vulnerable spots, and this country needs to realize it.”