Home 2017 Races Don’t Allow the NRA to Buy this Election

Don’t Allow the NRA to Buy this Election


by Bert Berlin

The blood has barely dried in Las Vegas. The National Rifle Association (NRA) assumes we have forgotten the dead and wounded. It is spending large amounts of its member’s money trying to defeat candidates in Virginia who believe that we can, consistent with the Second Amendment, prevent the shocking number of gun deaths that occur in this country every year.

There are many significant issues involved in all the campaigns in Virginia this year, but the NRA has chosen to make this year’s election a plebiscite on guns, at least on its position on guns that no government can interfere with the ability of citizens to buy and take anywhere as many weapons of whatever power they want. The NRA uses scare tactics to claim that any candidate with the temerity to suggest that we need universal background checks; or that nobody has a legitimate need for certain types of rapid-fire firearms; or that nobody needs to buy large numbers of firearms at a time; is really planning to confiscate all the guns of law-abiding citizens.

Let’s be serious, no governor or lieutenant governor or attorney general has the authority or the logistical ability – even if they wanted to do so – to confiscate weapons from the 35% of Virginians who own them. But, that doesn’t matter to the NRA. Over the years, it has achieved its political power by claiming for years that “they” are coming to take away your guns. (And, don’t think that the NRA is really concerned with gun confiscation. What it is concerned with is the continued ability of weapons manufacturers and sellers to maximize their profits by making sure they can sell large amounts of all kinds of firearms without any restrictions.)

There are many reasons why it would be a disaster for Ed Gillespie, Jill Vogel and John Adams to be elected. The NRA has, with its scare ads, added another. If any of the three Republicans are elected it will significantly increase the power of the NRA to control the legislative agenda on guns in Richmond. The NRA will be able to threaten any legislator that votes against its positions. We must not allow that to happen.

UPDATE by Lowell: According to VPAP, the NRA poured in $168,939 for anti-Northam TV ads in the week of October 16-22 alone. Overall, so far the NRA has spent a whopping $762,600 trying to push its puppet, Ed Gillespie, to victory on November 7.  Also note that Gillespie has refused to release his NRA questionnaire, and that his running mate Jill Vogel, “did not call for restricting bump stocks when asked for their positions.”  That’s right, Jill Vogel is for devices like the one used in the Las Vegas gun massacre. Great, huh? Finally, note that in the June Quinnipiac poll, Virginia voters supported mandatory background checks on all gun buyers by a 91%-8% margin (!). Virginia voters also supported by a 55%-41% margin “a nationwide ban on high-capacity magazines for guns” and by a 56%-37% margin “a nationwide ban on assault weapons.” Clearly, the ones out of step with Virginia voters are Ed Gillespie, Jill Vogel and John Adams — not the Democrats!

  • This is what we will NOT get if Mark Herring is – god forbid – defeated on 11/7. Let’s make sure he wins reelection, preferably by a large margin!


    ~ Brief Says 2nd Amendment Leaves States Room to Implement Reasonable Firearm Regulations like a Ban on High-Capacity Magazines ~

    RICHMOND (October 19, 2017) – Attorney General Mark R. Herring has joined a coalition of 12 states and the District of Columbia in filing a friend-of-the-court brief urging the United States Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit to recognize the right of states to enact commonsense gun safety measures like California’s ban on large-capacity ammunition magazines. The brief urges the court to overturn a lower court’s order preliminarily enjoining the California law, and argues that nothing about the Second Amendment, under Supreme Court precedent, prevents states and the District from enacting reasonable gun regulations.

    “Too many families in Virginia and around the country know the pain and loss of gun violence, and it’s critical that states like Virginia have the ability to enact commonsense gun safety measures to help keep people safe” said Attorney General Mark Herring. “Large capacity magazines allow dangerous individuals to kill and injure with stunning and heartbreaking speed. The Supreme Court has consistently recognized that the Second Amendment protects the right to bear arms while still allowing for commonsense, evidence-based policy decisions to save lives and promote public safety.”

    The California law bans magazines that hold more than 10 rounds of ammunition. These large-capacity magazines, or LCMs, are disproportionally used by mass shooters to kill and injure large numbers of people quickly, including law enforcement officers.

    “Both common sense and empirical evidence suggest that prohibiting LCMs will reduce the number of crimes in which LCMs are used and reduce the lethality and devastation of gun crime when it does occur,” the brief notes. “At the same time, there is no proof that LCMs are necessary-or even commonly used-for self-defense.”

    The brief, available here, underscores that whatever policy judgment an individual state may make, Supreme Court precedent supports a state’s ability to experiment with and reform gun laws. “In dismissing California’s reliance on the empirical and anecdotal evidence before it, the court below applied a cramped and overly demanding standard of what constitutes substantial evidence and eliminated the deference to which California’s predictive judgments are entitled,” the brief says.

    In addition to Attorney General Herring, the attorneys general of Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, and Washington joined the brief.

  • Edward N Virginia

    Speaking of the Second Amendment: ITS A CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT just like the others! STOP talking about it as if it were not. If you want to win elections in rural constituencies you should
    – WE MUST PROTECT all our Constitutional rights. You can even say that we must do so in a time when the White House is trying to strike out Constitutional rights. Just be sure to say that YOU support protecting ALL our Constitutional rights.
    – MEAN IT! don’t just mouth it. People know when you don’t mean it. Poor people and working class people KNOW when you’re talking down to them. Black people (in my experience) KNOW when you’re talking down to them. DO NO TALK DOWN to rural or other people.
    – If you want to attack NRA have very specific reasons to do so NOT a general complaint about ‘gun violence’. THAT is a form of talking down to people. If you don’t like to hear people accuse BLM of all urban violence, etc, then you should imagine yourself in the minds of people who have experience that NRA was important to them to protect their rights.
    – Having done these steps, then, then when you criticize NRA messages you will appear and be credible. YOU ARE PRESENTLY IN-crediable and UGLY to many – even most – voters who know that guns helped them feel safe in unsafe homes and unsafe communities, in rural places where it takes police an hour or more to get to, voters who hunt, and increasingly many WOMEN voters, and may VOTERS of colors who own guns.

  • armatus rebellio

    You mean like Jon Ossoff in Georgia?

    “out-of-state groups — super PACS, nonprofits and party committees — have together spent about $26.2 million to sway voters in the district”

    spoiler alert: he still lost


  • Droopy McDonuts

    Interesting how there’s no mention here of all the anti-gun, Bloomberg money that Northam et al. are getting in this campaign. HINT: It’s a whole lot more than the Republican candidates are getting from the NRA.