The Washington Post is reporting that anti-gun billionaire Michael Bloomberg’s Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund will pump “at least $1 million” into political races in Virginia, with the bulk going to Democrat gubernatorial candidate Ralph Northam and Attorney General Mark Herring.
A senior strategist for the Everytown group described the money as an “initial investment because Ralph Northam and Mark Herring have been forceful champions for gun violence prevention in Virginia, while their opponents subscribe to a dangerous ‘guns everywhere’ agenda.”
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Northam is reportedly getting a direct contribution of $450,000 and another $250,000 is being spent on mailers for him. Herring is getting $300,000, the WaPo said.
Anti-gunners have been spending big bucks trying to influence elections for some years now, with Bloomberg having shelled out millions of dollars for campaigns in Washington, Oregon, Colorado, Nevada and Maine, and he’s not alone.
In Washington State three years ago, billionaires Bill Gates, Steve Ballmer and Paul Allen joined with other wealthy elitists to bankroll the campaign to pass Initiative 594, the so-called “universal background check” measure. The campaign spent more than $10 million against relative token opposition to pass the initiative, which proponents claimed had the support of more than 80 percent of the voters. Yet, when the ballots were counted, the measure passed by just under 60 percent, indicating that someone had done some faulty math.
The disclosure comes 48 hours after the newspaper ran an opinion piece blasting guns and hunting, and people who own semi-auto sport/utility rifles that are almost universally misidentified as “assault rifles.” The article was about the proposed Sportsmen’s Heritage and Recreational Enhancement (SHARE) Act of 2017.
In that piece, the author wrote, “The days are growing colder, and soon millions of American hunters will pursue a time-honored tradition. They will load their automatic weapons with armor-piercing bullets, strap on silencers, head off to the picnic grounds on nearby public lakes — and start shooting.”
This was so offensive to the National Rifle Association that the organization responded with a lengthy critique that branded the WaPo article “fake news.”
“It is against the law in every state to hunt with fully automatic firearms,” the NRA said in rebuttal. “Such weapons are highly restricted and very rare due to the 1986 ban on their manufacture or importation.
“All shotgun and rifle ammunition is so-called armor piercing,” the organization explained, which an accurate statement. Soft body armor worn by police was essentially designed to stop handgun bullets. “Congress never intended to place restrictions on all shotgun and rifle ammunition.
“Laws restrict hunting and shooting to designated areas on public lands,” NRA added. “You can’t just go to any casual ‘picnic ground’ and ‘start shooting.’”
But who cares about facts when millions of dollars might be spent to influence political races, to elect politicians that presumably would support all manner of restrictions on a fundamental civil right?
If American gun owners thought their fight was over when Donald Trump took office and appointed Neil Gorsuch to the U.S. Supreme Court, they were woefully mistaken. The gun prohibition lobby is in it for the long haul, and with billionaire backers, they will be able to afford the journey.
There may be no more strategic time than right now for activist gun owners to join or support their favorite rights organization, be it NRA, the Second Amendment Foundation, Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, Gun Owners of America or some other group.