NEW YORK — The Trump administration will investigate media outlets for biased coverage of its plans to expand background checks for gun buyers, according to documents obtained by The Associated Press.
The Office of Government Ethics will lead a review into the media’s coverage of the proposal, which Trump has promised to push through Congress.
The president has also promised to make it easier for guns to be sold online, but his administration has been bogged down in congressional investigations into whether he is violating the 1994 assault weapons ban.
The Associated Reuters news service first reported that the review would take place in March.
It did not say how the review will be conducted.
The OGE is responsible for enforcing federal laws, such as the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act, and enforcing federal rules that govern the handling of firearms and ammunition.
The Trump White House has not responded to requests for comment.
In an email, the OGE said it does not comment on pending or future investigations.
The White House did not respond to requests to comment.
Background checks for firearms and other weapons have been controversial in the United States since 1994, when President Bill Clinton signed the law banning firearms in public places.
In the early days of the gun debate, the NRA opposed a proposed universal background check.
The National Rifle Association, which is not part of the OCE review, also opposed it.
The NRA says the law is needed to prevent mass shootings.
The measure would require gun sellers to submit information about the mental health and criminal histories of potential purchasers, and to make the records public for at least two years.
The law has drawn the ire of Democrats who say it will not do enough to prevent gun violence and could make it harder for people to buy firearms.
Some gun rights advocates have said the law could make the country less safe by allowing criminals to obtain firearms.
The bill passed the Senate in 2015 and the House in 2015, and it died in the House of Representatives.
Trump has proposed making the background check process more streamlined and making it easier to buy guns, but he has not indicated how he plans to enforce the law.