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Photo: Richard Ellis/Getty Images

President Donald Trump may still be thinking about supporting expanded background checks for gun sales after all.

Driving the news: A memo titled "Idea for New Unlicensed-Commercial-Sale Background Checks" was being circulated as Attorney General Bill Barr and the White House's legislative affairs director Eric Ueland visited this week with Republicans on Capitol Hill.

Why it matters: The president was expected to say this week what, if any, gun control legislation he is prepared to support. Advocates were doubtful he would support expanded background checks because polling suggested it could hurt his standing with core supporters.

The memo, first reported by the Daily Caller and also obtained by Axios, suggests he may be open to background checks depending on feedback from Republican lawmakers.

  • The memo talks about extending a background-check requirement "to all advertised commercial sales, including sales at gun shows."
  • It would be consistent with the bipartisan Manchin-Toomey draft legislation.
  • It would impose civil penalties for failure to keep necessary records.

Where it stands: The president has not said publicly whether he supports the proposal in the memo or is just shopping it. White House spokesman Hogan Gidley said Trump "has not signed off on anything yet" and said the memo is "not a White House document."

  • Meanwhile, the head of the NRA's lobbying arm, Jason Ouimet, said that the memo is a "nonstarter," because "it burdens law-abiding gun owners while ignoring what actually matters: fixing the broken mental health system and the prosecution of violent criminals."

Read the memo:

Editor's note: This story has been updated with responses from the White House and the NRA.

Go deeper

1 hour ago - Health

Axios Harris Poll 100: Pfizer, Moderna reputations soar post-vaccine

Data: Harris Poll; Chart: Danielle Alberti/Axios

America's affections have shifted away from the companies that helped us manage pandemic life and toward the vaccine manufacturers that are helping to end it.

Driving the news: Moderna and Pfizer shot up the ranks this year in the Axios/Harris 100, our annual survey of corporate reputations. Moderna is Americans' third-favorite company this year, and Pfizer came in at seventh — up from No. 61 a year ago.

Big Tech's reputation takes a pandemic plunge

Expand chart
Data: Harris Poll; Chart: Danielle Alberti/Axios

Americans have fallen further out of love with Big Tech, the latest Axios/Harris 100 brand reputation poll shows.

Why it matters: Even though Americans were hyper-connected to their devices throughout the pandemic, their relationship with many of the world's biggest tech firms has continued on a downward trend, suggesting that people see their products as necessary evils.

There's an ETF for everything, except bitcoin

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Happiness. Weed. Robots. Water. Whatever the theme, there's probably an ETF promoting a basket of stocks related to it.

Why it matters: Thematic ETFs are an investment mania side effect. There's newfound retail investor interest in narrow exposure to hot corners of the stock market. More are launching to meet the moment.