Anti-gunners weaponize wealth as Virginia election looms

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The Giffords gun control lobbying group is pouring big bucks into the Virginia legislative election, which occurs Nov. 5, in an effort to turn the legislature Democrat, and thus more agreeable to gun restrictions.

The well-funded Giffords PAC, named for former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, is pouring money into the legislative election in Virginia. (Screen snip, YouTube, C-SPAN )

Newsweek reported Thursday that the Giffords PAC will spend $300,000 in advertising, following reports in the Washington Post and Ammoland that first appeared earlier in the week.

Giffords PAC is also investing $50,000 in the mayoral race in Aurora, Colorado, the news agencies all reported. They’re supporting Omar Montgomery in his race against former Republican Congressman Mike Coffman.

Giffords complains that Coffman voted for gun rights while on Capitol Hill, which is one reason the lobbying group helped unseat Coffman last year.

The Newsweek story focused on the fact that anti-gunners are opening the bank doors, outspending the National Rifle Association, which is entangled with widely-reported legal and financial problems.

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There is a lesson in this for grassroots gun rights organizations. Politics requires money; lots of it as the 2020 election campaign season looms. Second Amendment activist groups need to be raising money right now, and working on get-out-the-vote efforts if they have any notion of waging a battle against billionaire-backed gun prohibition groups.

Money is a more formidable weapon than firearms when it comes to politics. With many convinced the NRA is in trouble, and thus believing this puts the entire gun rights community on the ropes, they are pulling out all the stops. They want to take back Congress and oust Donald Trump from the White House. After that, the brakes will be off.

Trump has spent the past three years filling more than 150 federal court vacancies with conservative judges. He appointed Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court. That could be his lasting legacy, because the lower federal courts are where most gun law is decided.

Activists who attended the recent Gun Rights Policy Conference in Phoenix heard from several panels about the importance of retaining the U.S. Senate and the Oval Office to continue putting pro-rights judges on the federal bench. Anti-gun Democrats have been working overtime in an effort to derail that train ever since Trump won the 2016 election.

Ammoland reported that Parker Slaybaugh, spokesman for Virginia Republican House Speaker Kirk Cox, told the press, “The outside gun control groups have meddled in our elections for years, so this is nothing new and doesn’t change our strategy.”

But strategy must change at the grassroots level if gun owners expect to keep gun-friendly politicians in office and prevent anti-gunners from taking over. Every gun owner will have to become a political activist, according to the consensus at the Gun Rights Conference. Instead of buying another gun “just in case,” that money might be put to better use as a donation to a gun rights campaign war chest, and/or a pro-gun candidate or incumbent.

There’s a political showdown coming and the ammunition is money. Gun owners do not want to enter that battle with empty magazines.

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