The National Rifle Association officially endorsed presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump for president on Friday at the gun rights group's annual convention in Kentucky.
A Trump campaign source initially confirmed the impending endorsement to The Daily Beast, saying, "Yup, it's happening."
"You can kiss your guns goodbye" if Hillary Clinton is elected to the White House, NRA CEO Wayne LaPierre told the conservative audience before Trump spoke. NRA's chief lobbyist and head political strategist Chris Cox then introduced Trump as "the next President of the United States," effectively sealing the endorsement.
At the NRA-ILA Leadership Forum last year, Trump had told the gun-loving audience, “If I run for president [in 2016], and if I win, the Second Amendment will. Be. Totally. Protected. That I can tell you.”
However, following the Sandy Hook massacre in December 2012, Trump tweeted that President Obama "spoke for me and every American in his remarks in Newtown Connecticut." The speech was roundly criticized by the NRA and other gun-rights groups.
—Asawin Suebsaeng & Andrew Desiderio