Democrats’ Exciting New Hope Adheres to Tired Old Anti-Gun Dogma

Democrats searching for a standard-bearer in the 2020 presidential election lit on long-time entertainment, media, and publishing figure Oprah Winfrey this week, following a speech Winfrey gave at a televised Hollywood extravaganza. Winfrey received wide acclaim for her remarks, but amidst the #oprah2020 mania that has followed, questions have arisen over what Winfrey stands for politically and whether she has the desire and skill set to lead the Free World. Some of those questions remain unanswered, but for gun owners, one thing is crystal clear: Oprah Winfrey embraces the staunchly anti-gun posture of contemporary Hollywood.

Winfrey’s anti-gun activism dates back to at least the 1990s when she was closely involved with the rabidly anti-gun group CeaseFire, Inc. The now defunct group’s website, still archived online, attests to its fanaticism. It’s Mission Statement, for example, explained:

Through a coordinated public service announcement (PSA) print and broadcast campaign, our mission is to mobilize a broad cross section of American leadership to educate and promote handgun-free homes and families. By highlighting the public health implications of handgun violence, Cease Fire can educate Americans to view handguns as the inherently unsafe and dangerous products they are, and not appropriate to have in any home. [Emphasis added.]

Oprah Winfrey was part of this “education” campaign, appearing in CeaseFire’s print and broadcast ads and in its fundraising materials. 

CeaseFire pioneered elements of the modern anti-gun publicity playbook, heavily promoting dubious factoids and inflating statistics about firearms’ supposed toll on “children” by including statistics pertaining to 18- and 19-year-old adults (a common age for gang membership). Its ads featured actors such as Winfrey and Paul Newman gravely recounting media stories about gun owners accidentally killing their loved ones. Even gun safes, according to the group’s ads, weren’t to be trusted. Taglines included, “Before you bring a gun in the house, think about it” and “A Home is no place for a handgun.”

The legendary Charlton Heston, who would go on to be one of the NRA’s most iconic presidents, lamented in 1997, “We’ve reached that point in time when our national social policy originates on ‘Oprah.’” 

Indeed, in 2000, Winfrey promoted the so-called Million Mom March (the march) on her popular daytime talk show. The march was actually a Mother’s Day rally of women in support of gun control on the National Mall. Although the actual number of “marchers” who attended the D.C. rally was considerably less than a “million,” the event received a major boost from Winfrey’s free publicity.  The Brady Campaign To Prevent Gun Violence – which later merged with the anti-gun organization that formed around the march – recounts that the march’s website crashed from the crush of traffic generated when its online address was published during Winfrey’s show.  Winfrey told her viewers that if they didn’t “do something” to stop “children” from being killed by firearms, they were “part of the problem.”

Insisting that she is “apolitical,” Winfrey nevertheless became a staunch supporter of Barack Obama’s hyper-partisan political career. Wikidpedia states that “Oprah Winfrey’s endorsement of Barack Obama was one of the most widely covered and studied developments of the 2008 presidential campaign.” One paper by two economists from the University of Maryland estimates that Winfrey’s endorsement “was responsible for approximately 1,000,000 additional votes for Obama,” potentially swaying the 2008 Democratic primary in the two-term president’s favor. “Winfrey, for her part, described Obama’s political ascendance as “beyond and above politics” and “something new.”

Obama’s strongly pro-gun control views clearly did not diminish Oprah Winfrey’s support for him.  Rather, she repeatedly used her vast public reach to support Obama’s gun control agenda during his presidency. At Harvard’s commencement in 2013, for example, Winfrey plugged the administration’s #1 gun control initiative, “universal background checks.” In 2016, she indicated support for an “assault weapons” ban (another Obama-backed measure) in the wake of a mass murder in Orlando, Florida. “Are we a country that really believes that assault weapons should be made available to anybody?” she commented. “Are assault weapons necessary? I … just say, ‘enough.’”

Fortunately, unlike most of her other high-profile endeavors, Oprah Winfrey’s gun control activism has been a failure, at least as measured by additional federal gun control laws. But it’s hard to overstate the immense cult of personality that surrounds her, as well as the reflexive adulation she engenders from her fellow elites in entertainment and media. Like Barack Obama – with whom she remains close – a President Oprah Winfrey could count on their unconditional support, as well as their protection against any serious scrutiny or criticism. 

Gun owners know that the last thing America needs is another gun-control absolutist as president. Because while Oprah Winfrey is wrong that handguns do not belong in the home, it’s true that handgun abolitionists do not belong in the White House.

2017: Another Year Millions of Americans Bought Firearms

We, like many of our members, watched the NICS numbers all year. We read – and fact-checked – all of the claims about the “Trump Slump” and the imminent collapse of the entire firearms industry (see herehereherehere, and here). Month after month, the narrative around the NICS data framed gun sales as waning because a new record wasn’t set. Bloomberg headlined its latest entry, “Gun Sales in America Drop.” The Chicago Tribune reported that “Holiday gun sales dip after record Black Friday.” 

The FBI released the final NICS numbers for 2017. There were 25,235,215 total NICS checks in 2017 – making last year the second busiest year ever for the NICS office. Across all states, territories, and the District of Columbia, there were 7.2 million NICS checks related to handguns (not including private sales, rentals, returned, pre-pawn, or pawn redemption checks); 5.2 million for long guns; just under 400,000 for “other” firearms; and 236,167 checks for multiple purchases. More than 9.9 million Americans initiated a NICS check for a permit last year. 

In terms of individual categories of NICS checks, 2017 ranks third for handgun-related NICS checks and second for “other” checks. In terms of total sales-related checks (handgun, long gun, other, and multiple), 2017 was the fourth-busiest year ever. It was also the second busiest year for permit checks. 

Interest in defense and the shooting sports clearly remains strong; sure, NICS doesn’t provide a 1:1 proxy for gun sales but the FBI saw more than 13 million sales-related checks and almost 10 million permit checks. That equates to more than twenty-seven thousand permit checks and nearly thirty-six thousand sales-related checks every single day of the year. 

Hopefully, we can put the claims of “Trump Slump” and of the demise of the firearms industry to rest along with the year 2017. The continued strong NICS numbers all year indicate that Americans’ interest in defending themselves and their families, and their interest in the shooting sports, is not dependent on the occupant of the White House. We fully expect the firearms industry to continue to support the passions shared by millions of law-abiding Americans throughout 2018.

You’ve Got Fail: Investigation into Online Gun Sales Backfires on Gun Controllers

In yet another embarrassment for the gun control lobby, a government investigation of online gun sales designed to determine “whether private sellers would knowingly sell a firearm to an individual prohibited from possessing one” determined that … no, actually, they would not. In 72 attempts undertaken over 2 ½ years, undercover agents trying to buy guns through readily-accessible Internet sites failed exactly 100% of the time to complete a sale when the seller had reason to believe the buyer was prohibited or lived in another state.

Ironically, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) report — “Internet Firearm Sales: ATF Enforcement Efforts and Outcomes of GAO Covert Testing” – was commissioned by three staunchly anti-gun members of Congress. Leading the charge was Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, who was joined by Sens. Brian Schatz (D-HI) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA).

The legislators were apparently banking on GAO to replicate the results of three earlier “studies” bought and paid for by über anti-gun sugar daddy Michael Bloomberg, beginning with 2011’s “Point, Click, Fire.” Using a similar methodology to the GAO study (responding to online sales ads with the suggestion they couldn’t pass a background check), Bloomberg’s investigators claimed that 62% of private sellers were nevertheless willing to proceed with the sale. 

Two later Bloomberg-backed efforts – one specifically timed to support the Bloomberg-funded “universal background check” initiative campaign in Nevada – claimed to prove that prohibited criminals were posting “want-to-buy” ads for gun. This was supposedly ascertained by comparing information the posters provided with their ads to criminal history records.

Combining the results of the studies, Bloomberg’s lackeys extrapolated that hundreds of thousands of dangerous criminals were acquiring firearms through “unregulated” online sales every year.

Needless to say, Bloomberg and his constantly-rebranding gun control empire – variously known as Mayors Against Illegal Guns, Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, and Everytown for Gun Safety – argued the results of these publicity stunts “proved” the need for more gun control. The number one policy prescription was a federal “universal background check” law.

Of course, this narrative was picked up and eagerly pushed by the anti-gun media. 

But the GAO report also reinforced what the NRA has said all along, that online sales are not “unregulated” but subject to the same federal laws that apply to any other commercial or private gun sales. These include licensing for commercial sellers (with the attendant responsibility to identify buyers, keep transaction records, and run background checks), restrictions for all sellers on transacting across state lines, and a ban on selling to anyone with reason to believe the person is prohibited.

GAO’s findings showed nothing so much as that private sellers advertising online are knowledgeable about the law, conscientious, and self-policing. Fifty-six of the sellers (78%) “outright refused to complete a transaction once our undercover agents revealed either that the shipping address was across state lines or that the agent was prohibited from owning firearms.” In five other cases, the forum on which the ad was posted “froze” the prospective buyers’ accounts and blocked the transaction once information on their prohibited status was revealed. The agents failed to complete the remaining 11 cases because they determined the sellers wanted to take their money without actually making delivery of the firearm.

In every single case, however, the sellers would not deliver a firearm to a buyer they had reason to believe was prohibited or lived in a different state. The GAO report also showed that websites and legitimate sellers were willing to freeze out suspicious actors and cooperate with law enforcement officials to identify and successfully prosecute criminals operating online.    

So much for the “Wild Wild Web” that Bloomberg has spent so much time and money trying to conjure in the public imagination.

The investigators went even further, however, and also tried to purchase guns on the so-called “Dark Web,” which the report said “contains content that has been intentionally concealed and requires specific computer software to gain access,” thus affording users “little risk of detection.” The ATF put it more simply, explaining the Dark Web is “designed to facilitate criminal activity online.”

But even on the Dark Web, and even dropping the ruse that they were prohibited purchasers, GAO’s undercover agents were still only able to complete two of seven attempted transactions. One involved a semi-automatic Uzi that had been (apparently falsely) advertised as a machine gun, and the other was an AR-15 with an obliterated serial number. Both cases were referred for further criminal investigation.

Yet in sharp contrast to Bloomberg’s previous efforts, the GAO did not substantiate that most private sellers advertising online are willing to break the law. To the contrary, the GAO results showed that sellers operating on readily-accessible websites understood the law about restricted firearm sales and scrupulously followed it (even if some were seemingly willing to scam apparent criminals out of their money).

In Bloomberg’s world, you get what you pay for, and that includes “investigative” outcomes and fawning attention from the press. But GAO is not on his payroll. To their credit, they did a professional job with their investigation, and the results speak for themselves. Just don’t expect to hear about it from the media this time.

VIDEO: The most feared organization? NRA? No, Gun Owners of America!

Erich Pratt, Executive Director of Gun Owners of America, in an email to supporters writes:

There’s only one thing the liberal media hates more than the Second Amendment…

Gun Owners of America.

Time and time again liberal celebrities and the media blast Gun Owners of America for our “dangerous” belief in the Second Amendment and for our dedication to protecting the rights of gun owners across the country.

One liberal MSNBC talk show host lamented that GOA is “tougher than the NRA.” Watch the video below to see for yourself!

EDITORS NOTE: Those readers wishing to support Gun Owners of America may do so by clicking here.

Here Are the 5 Worst ‘Fake News’ Reports on Guns in 2017

President Donald Trump and the Republican-controlled Congress are strongly pro-Second Amendment, which means new gun control laws were dead on arrival in 2017.

But the mainstream media, not to be quietly defeated, exposed its anti-gun bias more than ever this year.

The national newspapers and left-wing TV networks continued to churn out unbalanced reports on gun crime and laws, while refusing to learn accurate terminology. Here are the top offenders.

1. USA Today

Anyone with common sense knows a chain saw weighs more than a rifle and its weight would pull it down, much less be stuck to an electric socket.

Readers immediately mocked the absurd getup by posting mockups of other “possible modifications” to an AR-15—laugh-out-loud things like a nuclear missile and a full-size F-16.

Andrew Wilkow added increasingly smaller AR-15s under the full-size one, like one of those Russian wood dolls of decreasing sizes.

2. CNN

After the horrifying shooting of Republican members of Congress on a softball field, CNN published a story in June titled “Where does the GOP baseball shooting leave the gun control debate?” It was not a news report by any definition.

The entire article is an interview—conducted by email—with the president of the (mostly irrelevant) Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence.

The reporter did not “email interview” any pro-Second Amendment group or activist for any balance. CNN didn’t even include that House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., who almost died in the politically motivated shooting, had not changed his views on protecting the Second Amendment from any further infringement.

Also, there seems to be no one employed by CNN who has any knowledge of firearms statistics. Jim Acosta, the senior White House correspondent, tweeted: “Since Sandy Hook there have been at least 1,552 mass shootings, with at least 1,767 people killed and 6,227 wounded.”

Acosta, who has almost a half-million followers on Twitter, was not actually citing CNN, but an article in the left-wing outlet Vox.

Click through the article and you’ll see the data it contains is riddled with errors. It takes statistics from a group called “Gun Violence Archive,” which makes up out of whole cloth the definition of “mass shooting” to include people who are shot, but not killed. The group includes “news reports” for media sources instead of citing law enforcement agencies.

Nowhere in the article does Vox mention that there is an official government definition of “mass shooting,” which is four or more people killed outside the home in one incident.

In fact, the number of people killed annually in mass shootings has been an average of 23 over the last 30 years.

Don’t believe me?

That statistic is from leading gun control voice in Congress Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., who gets her data from the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service.

Acosta never explained his promotion of the bad reporting. The tweet remains on his account, giving the fake news legitimacy to CNN viewers.

3. NBC News

In this story, published five years after the Sandy Hook massacre, NBC reports that Congress has passed no new gun control laws, even when President Barack Obama was in office. That was true (aside from regulations through the White House), but NBC gives every reason for this, except a fact-based one.

The reason Congress doesn’t pass more gun control laws is that not one has ever been proven to reduce gun crime.

Instead, NBC puts the blame on anti-gun groups not being unified against the powerful NRA. (That would come as big a surprise to the Second Amendment Foundation, Gun Owners of America, and other pro-Second Amendment groups.)

NBC also nonsensically reports that gun control groups can’t compete with the resources of the NRA. It leaves out that those groups receive tens of millions of dollars from billionaire former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, while the NRA is funded by its grassroots members.

To cap off the bias in this story, NBC violates journalism rule 101, which is to ask a representative from the other side of the issue for a response.

4. The Economist

The Economist was once a reliable source of information on economics and finance. But, as this gun story makes clear, the magazine is now a partisan tool of the left.

In a November story about the tragic church shooting in Texas, The Economist cites “mass shooting” data from Mother Jones, a far-left outlet, rather than government agencies. Then the reporter writes that the shooter used an AR-15, which “was prohibited in 1994, but legalized in 2004 when America’s assault-weapons ban expired.”

That’s true, but not the whole story. The ban expired because Congress determined it was not effective in decreasing the number of homicides by rifle. The reader is left with the false impression that lack of a gun ban was directly responsible for the horrific church shooting.

The Economist does not even include data from the FBI, which would illuminate readers about the issue of gun violence. The most recent statistics available are from 2016. The FBI data show that there were 11,004 homicides by firearm. Of those, only 374 were by rifles of any kind.

5. The Associated Press

Almost every media outlet in the country—TV, print, and online—pays the Associated Press to use its wire service to supplement or replace its own reporting. This means AP has an outsized impact on news reports because its work appears in everything from local newspapers to network news.

Eagle-eyed Cargar Dolor recently tweeted to me: “This AP story from today claims that authorities recovered a ‘40mm pistol.’”

Clearly, the reporter knows nothing about the basic ballistics of firearms, and neither do the editors.

I tweeted to AP to correct this to a .40 caliber pistol, which it eventually did. Meanwhile, the more educated public tweeted to me that “40mm” is the size of a cannon or a grenade launcher.

Many of these mistakes would be funny if they weren’t rooted in ideological narrowness. They show how the mainstream media deliberately attempts to confuse the public in order to build support for more gun control laws.

At a higher level, the repeated bad reporting in just one area of public debate that shows the top editors and managers in mainstream media assign reporters to cover gun crime, without any expertise on the subject, research into data, or fact-checking.

If it weren’t for conservative media and informed social media users, the average American might walk the streets in fear of being attacked by someone wielding a rifle with a chainsaw attached to the bottom.

COMMENTARY BY

Portrait of Emily Miller

Emily Miller is an award-winning jour

The Washington Post Exposes Pelosi Lie on National Reciprocity

As the saying goes, even a broken clock is right twice a day. Of course, such a record would be an improvement for the Washington Post’s gun coverage. However, over the past year, the Post’s Fact Checker column has provided readers with a handful of well-researched pieces challenging the ridiculous assertions made by some gun control advocates. This week brought their latest, where writer Glenn Kessler admonished House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) for her recent comments on H.R. 38, or the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017.

Specifically, the article targeted a December 6 tweet from the former House speaker, where she stated,

Inviting violent criminals to carry concealed weapons doesn’t save lives

Inviting domestic abusers to carry concealed weapons doesn’t save lives

Inviting convicted stalkers to carry concealed weapons doesn’t save lives

Yet the @HouseGOP just voted to do exactly that #StopCCR

Earlier that day, the House passed H.R. 38 with bipartisan support by a 231-198 vote. The legislation would require states that issue Right-to-Carry permits to recognize the Right-to-Carry permits of all other states. Under the House legislation, law-abiding individuals from states where a permit is not required would also be able to carry in other states so long as they carry valid photo identification.

In relation to the tweet, a Pelosi spokesman told Kessler that the “information [was] provided by Everytown for Gun Safety.” Pelosi’s office also told Kessler that “the bill is terrible.”

Going to the heart of the matter, Kessler pointed out that the categories of individuals Pelosi listed are already prohibited from possessing firearms under federal law. Specifically, 18 U.S.C. § 922(g) prohibits possession by any person,

who has been convicted in any court of, a crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year

who is subject to a court order that—

(A) was issued after a hearing of which such person received actual notice, and at which such person had an opportunity to participate;
(B) restrains such person from harassing, stalking, or threatening an intimate partner of such person or child of such intimate partner or person, or engaging in other conduct that would place an intimate partner in reasonable fear of bodily injury to the partner or child; and

(i) includes a finding that such person represents a credible threat to the physical safety of such intimate partner or child; or
(ii) by its terms explicitly prohibits the use, attempted use, or threatened use of physical force against such intimate partner or child that would reasonably be expected to cause bodily injury;

who has been convicted in any court of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence.

States have small variations on the scope of individuals they prohibit from carrying firearms, but federal law targets the broad categories Pelosi mentioned. Explaining this fact, Kessler noted, “the differences among most states may loom larger in the gun debate than in reality.” Moreover, Pelosi should be well aware of the federal prohibition concerning those convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence; in 1996 she voted to approve the final version of H.R.3610, which contained this restriction.

Kessler went on to note that some form of Right-to-Carry reciprocity is already the law for the vast majority of states. In fact, a majority of states already either recognize carry permits from all other states, or recognize the permits of any state where their permit is recognized – without any further conditions.

Pelosi’s dishonest tweet earned her a well-deserved three out of four Pinocchios from the Post. However, there is a solid case for a fourth.

It is Pelosi’s central thesis that H.R. 38 poses a public safety risk. Kessler addressed this by pointing to a letter to congressional leadership in support of H.R. 38 from Missouri Attorney General Joshua D. Hawley and signed by 23 other state attorneys general. Kessler cited a passage that stated, “Concealed carry permit holders are among the most law-abiding members of society, and those States that allow for reciprocal concealed-carry permits have not encountered any significant safety issues.” However, other information in the letter and data and research on Right-to-Carry further refute Pelosi’s contention.

Elsewhere in the letter, Hawley, citing a law review article on the subject, explained,

In Texas, for example, state data on permit holders shows that, compared to the general public, they are “ten times less likely to commit a crime, eleven times less likely to commit an aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, and seven times less likely to commit deadly conduct with a firearm.”

A similar scenario has played out in Florida. As of June 30, 2017, there were 1,784,395 valid Concealed Weapon Licenses in the state. From July 1, 2016, to June 30, 2017, the state revoked or suspended 6,739 permits for any reason; a rate of 377.6 per 100,000. If limited to just license revocations, the rate is 83.6 per 100,000. FBI data shows that there were 726,396 arrests in Florida 2016, which is 3,524 arrests per 100,000 in population. Clearly, permit holders are far more law-abiding than the general public.

Moreover, violent crime has fallen by half since the early nineties, and at the same time, the popularity of Right-to-Carry has exploded. Since hitting an all-time high violent crime rate in 1991, 26 states have enacted “shall-issue” Right-to-Carry laws. In addition to this simple analysis, the vast majority of social science research on Right-to-Carry laws has found that these laws either have no effect on crime or have caused a modest decrease.

Throughout 2017 there has been mounting pressure among Democrats for Pelosi to relinquish her role as House minority leader. The concern is understandable. For years Pelosi has had poor favorability numbers, but now it appears she can’t even rely on the Democrat-friendly Post for fawning coverage. At least four times this year the Post has highlighted Pelosi’s lies about major legislation or the Trump administration. We’ll leave it to House Democrats whether they are comfortable being led by a politician who tells lies the left-wing media won’t even tolerate.

FBI receives over 200,000 gun checks on Black Friday

In a UPI.com article titled “FBI receives record-breaking 200,000 gun checks on Black Friday” Daniel Uria reports:

Nov. 26 (UPI) — The FBI received more than 200,000 background check requests for gun purchases on Black Friday, the bureau reported.

In total the FBI received 203,086 gun background check requests, required for purchases at federally licensed firearm dealers, on the major U.S. shopping day, USA Today reported.

The requests broke previous single-day records of 185,713 and 185,345 on Black Friday in 2016 and 2015 respectively, according to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System database.

The number of background checks doesn’t represent the actual number of guns sold, as multiple firearms can be purchased in one transaction.

Read more.

 

Gun Controllers Choose to Ignore Cases of Good Guys with Guns

Less than three hours after the tragedy at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) was looking to score political points. As is his custom, Murphy fired off a tweet admonishing his colleagues for their refusal to submit to the gun control lobby’s agenda. However, in the following hours, as more information about the shooting became available, it became clear the event didn’t fit so neatly into Murphy’s preconceived anti-gun narrative.

Reports began to come out that an armed citizen, later identified as NRA Member and former NRA Instructor Stephen Willeford, had engaged the shooter with his own firearm, prompting the killer to flee the scene. With little information and no qualms about denigrating the brave actions of an American hero, the omniscient Murphy tweeted, “Let’s be clear – nobody ‘stopped’ this shooting…” At the time Willeford engaged the shooter, there were at least 20 people still alive inside the church. A heart-rending account provided to the Washington Post by David Brown, son of wounded churchgoer Farida Brown, made clear that Farida Brown feared the shooter was not finished killing when Willeford came on the scene.

Murphy’s attempt to dismiss Willeford’s courageous response to the shooting is in keeping with gun control advocates’ longstanding messaging efforts and shows the depths anti-gun activists will sink to bury the facts. According to these gun-control proponents, good guys with guns don’t stop bad guys with guns.

In order to justify this position, gun control activists ignore cases where armed civilians have put a halt to mass violence. Like a perverse Goldilocks, gun controllers will discount cases where a criminal was stopped before they were able to carry out sufficient carnage, and, as in the case of the shooting in Southerland Springs, dismiss a case where the killer was able to exact significant violence before an armed citizen could arrive.

When you look past gun control advocates and much of the media’s biased filtering, there are a number of documented cases where armed citizens have confronted these types of killers and likely saved lives. Here are just a handful:

On August 1, 1966, a madman went to the observation deck of the University of Texas at Austin Tower and began firing at those on the ground, eventually killing 14. During the shooting, several citizens retrieved their personal firearms and returned fire. According to a university effort to compile a complete historical record of the incident, “The ground fire did pin down Whitman, most likely keeping him from killing more people.” One eyewitness told Texas Monthly in 2006, “It seemed like every other guy had a rifle. There was a sort of cowboy atmosphere, this ‘Let’s get him’ spirit.”

On January 16, 2002, a disgruntled former student returned to Appalachian School of Law in Grundy, Va. and shot two school officials. According to an account from student Tracy Bridges printed in the Richmond Times-Dispatch, he and fellow student Michael Gross retrieved firearms from their vehicles and went to confront the shooter. Along with two other students, Bridges and Gross were able to subdue the killer until police could arrive. In his book, The Bias Against Guns, Economist John Lott pointed out that “out of 208 news stories (from a computerized Nexis-Lexis search) in the week after the event, just four stories mentioned that the students who stopped the attack had guns.”

On December 9, 2007, a man entered the New Life Church in Colorado Springs, Colo. after having killed two people earlier in day at a Christian center in Arvada, Colo. The killer was met by volunteer armed church security guard Jeanne Assam. Describing her actions, Assam said, “I took cover. I identified myself. I engaged him. I took him down.” Following the incident, Church Pastor Brady Boyd called Assam a hero and explained, “Three people are needlessly dead, but many more lives could have been lost.” 

On April 17, 2015, a man fired into a crowd of people in Chicago’s Logan Square. John Hendricks, an Uber driver and Right-to-Carry permit holder, drew a handgun and shot the assailant, who collapsed onto the sidewalk. Recalling his experience for the Chicago Tribune, Hendricks explained, “There was a threat to me and I helped somebody in the process as well… It’s a positive feeling.”

On May 5, 2015, a deranged man drove into the parking lot of a fire station in New Holland, S.C. According to a report from WIS-TV, several children and firefighters were in the lot. The man then exited his vehicle with a firearm and shot into the air and at his own automobile. Firefighter Gary Knoll and one of his colleagues, both Right-to-Carry permit holders, drew firearms and confronted the man. Knoll and his colleagues were able to disarm the man and detain him until police could arrive. Speaking to the local media about the importance of exercising the Right-to-Carry, Knoll said, “It saved a life, if not multiple.”

On May 3, 2017, a man entered the Zona Caliente sports bar in Arlington, Texas, began speaking incoherently, and opened fire. At the time of the shooting, there were more than a dozen people inside the restaurant. A patron, who was also a Right-to-Carry permit holder, shot and killed the shooter, ending the incident. Arlington Police Spokesman Christopher Cook told the Dallas Morning News that the armed citizen was a “hero,” and noted that he “prevented further loss of life.”

In an interview with NRA, Willeford recalled the moment when he became aware of the gunfire at the church and said, “I kept hearing those shots and I knew every shot might be representing another person getting hit by a bullet.” Acting as fast as he could, Willeford retrieved his rifle, grabbed a handful of ammunition, and raced out his door barefoot towards the church. Anyone who has seen the NRA video, or Willeford’s other interviews, can see the anguish of a man who wishes he could have done even more to protect his community. Maybe Willeford’s heroic response wasn’t enough for Murphy to consider him a good guy with a gun, but the survivors in Sutherland Springs and the decent portion of America likely disagree.

RELATED ARTICLE: GUN CONTROL FAIL: Terrorists Use BANNED Guns To Murder 235 Egyptians, Media Fails To Report

Joe Biden: Hero Who Ended Texas Rampage Shouldn’t Have Had His Gun

Stephen Willeford

Most Americans consider Stephen Willeford a hero for bravely ending the rampage of a crazed murderer at a Texas church … but not former Vice President Joe Biden. During a national television appearance on Monday, Biden dismissed the Texan’s valorous actions, going so far as to say he shouldn’t have been carrying the AR-15 he used to stop the killer.

Biden, who is eyeing a presidential run in 2020, appeared on the Today show and took questions from the audience.

A young woman named Brianna asked him, “So with the tragedy that just happened in Texas, my question is, how do you justify the Democratic view on gun control when the shooter was stopped by a man who was legally licensed to carry a gun?”

It’s a fair question, given that the Democratic Party Platform labels AR-15s like the one Mr. Willeford used to defend his community “weapons of war” that must be taken “off our streets.” 

And true to form, Biden completely ignored the fact that Willeford used his rifle to save innocent lives.

“Well, first all,” Biden replied without hesitation, “the kind of gun being carried, he shouldn’t be carrying.”

Biden then went on to explain how he himself wrote the federal “assault weapons” ban in effect from 1994 to 2004. 

Yet Willeford himself has stressed that the type of firearm he used was a key factor in stopping the threat. “If I had run out of the house with a pistol and faced a bulletproof vest and kevlar and helmets,” he said in an interview, “it might have been futile.” 

“Number two,” Biden continued, “it’s just rational to say, certain people shouldn’t have guns. Now the fact that some people with guns are legally able to acquire a gun, and they turn out to be crazy after the fact, that’s life, and there’s nothing you can do about that. But we can save a lot of lives, and we’ve stopped tens of thousands of people who shouldn’t have guns from getting guns.”

Biden’s second point, given the question asked, was incoherent or non-responsive. Either Biden was suggesting Stephen Willeford was crazy and shouldn’t have had a gun, or he was simply pivoting to a familiar gun control talking point to deflect the uncomfortable fact that he had just suggested that Willeford shouldn’t have had access to the AR-15 that he used to end the Sutherland Springs shooting.

By all accounts, Stephen Willeford is an exemplary gun owner. He is an NRA member and has been certified as an NRA instructor, and his ability to deliver a precise, crime-ending shot in a high-stress encounter was the result of regular training and target practice. A neighbor described him as “a very good guy, very big Christian … the nicest man on the planet” and a person who “would do anything for anyone around here.” Nothing indicates Stephen Willeford is “crazy” or the type of person who shouldn’t lawfully be able to own any sort of firearm he wants. 

Biden’s more general point – that even some legal gun owners can later resort to bad behavior – has no relevance to the situation in Texas. The murderer was not a legal gun owner, and he did not obtain his crime guns legally. Thanks to a bureaucratic screw-up – exactly the sort of human fallibility that no law can cure – the criminal history information that would have disqualified the killer was never reported to the background check system. In other words, the very system that gun-control proponents seek to expand to all firearm transfers failed in exactly the situation where it might have done some good.

It says something about Joe Biden and his brand of politics that he is incapable of recognizing American heroism and goodness when it conflicts with his preordained agenda. 

Two men had similar firearms on that awful day in Sutherland Springs, Texas. The assailant had obtained his gun in defiance of the law, as bad men usually do. If Joe Biden had his way, the good guy who stopped him wouldn’t have had his gun at all. 

And make no mistake, if Stephen Willeford can’t own a gun in Joe Biden’s America, none of the rest of us would make the cut, either.   

Dianne Feinstein Wants to Ban Commonly Owned Semi-Autos, Again!

On Wednesday, Senator Dianne Feinstein introduced S. 2095, which she is calling the Assault Weapons Ban of 2017. The 125-page firearm prohibition fever dream is perhaps the most far-reaching gun ban ever introduced in Congress.

Subject to an exception for “grandfathered” firearms, the bill would prohibit AR-15s and dozens of other semi-automatic rifles by name (as well as their “variants” or “altered facsimiles”), and any semi-automatic rifle that could accept a detachable magazine and be equipped with a pistol grip, an adjustable or detachable stock, or a barrel shroud. And that’s just a partial list. “Pistol grip” would be defined as “a grip, a thumbhole stock, or any other characteristic that can function as a grip,” meaning the ban could implicate even traditional stocks or grips specifically designed to comply with existing state “assault weapon” laws.

Needless to say, semi-automatic shotguns and handguns would get similar treatment.

Also banned would be any magazine with a capacity of greater than 10 rounds or even any magazine that could be “readily restored, changed, or converted to accept” more than 10 rounds.

While Feinstein’s bill would graciously allow those who lawfully owned the newly-banned guns at the time of the law’s enactment to keep them, it would impose strict storage requirements any time the firearm was not actually in the owner’s hands or within arm’s reach. Violations would be punishable (of course) by imprisonment.

Owners of grandfathered “assault weapons” could also go to prison for allowing someone else to borrow or buy the firearm, unless the transfer was processed through a licensed firearms dealer. The dealer would be required to document the transaction and run a background check on the recipient.

Should lawful owners of the newly-banned firearms and magazines decide that the legal hazards of keeping them were too much, the bill would authorize the use of taxpayer dollars in the form of federal grants to establish programs to provide “compensation” for their surrender to the government.

This bill is nothing more than a rehash of Feinstein’s failed experiment in banning “assault weapons” and magazines over 10 rounds.  Except this time, Feinstein would like to go even further in restricting law-abiding Americans’ access to firearms and magazines that are commonly owned for lawful self-defense.

The congressionally-mandated study of the federal “assault weapon ban” of 1994-2004 found that the ban had little, if any, impact on crime, in part because “the banned guns were never used in more than a modest fraction” of firearm related crime.

Don’t let Dianne Feinstein infringe on our Second Amendment rights with a policy that’s been proven to do nothing to stop crime. Please contact your U.S. Senators and encourage them to oppose S. 2095.

You can contact your U.S. Senators by phone at (202) 224-3121, or click here to Take Action.

EXCLUSIVE: Texas Massacre Hero, Stephen Willeford, Describes Stopping Gunman | Louder With Crowder

An exclusive interview with Stephen Willeford, the hero who ended the killing spree in Sutherland Springs, Texas. Stephen recounts the actions that lead him to confronting Devin Patrick Kelley outside First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs.

The Conservative Review’s Jordan Schachtel reports:

plumber by trade, the 55-year-old Willeford shot and struck Kelley, who then dropped his rifle proceeded to flee the scene. But Willeford and a local driver pursued and, during the car chase, Kelley’s truck flipped and went into a ditch, Willeford said. Kelley was pronounced dead at the scene.

In the aftermath of the mass carnage, many on the Left predictably took to blaming the NRA and all gun-rights advocates.

But now we know that it was an NRA-affiliated man who heroically answered the call and took action before even more pain and suffering could be inflicted on innocent lives.

RELATED ARTICLE: Why I Pray, Even After the Texas Shooting

In 2014 Pat Robertson Endorsed Guns in Churches, Secularist Outraged

How prophetic that in September 2014 broadcaster, humanitarian, author, Christian, businessman and statesman Pat Robertson endorsed the idea that Christians must arm themselves, not only because they should, but that they are called to in the Holy Bible.

In Luke 22:36–38 Jesus used the following to describe self-defense:

36 He said to them, “But now let the one who has a moneybag take it, and likewise a knapsack. And let the one who has no sword sell his cloak and buy one. 37 For I tell you that this Scripture must be fulfilled in me: k‘And he was numbered with the transgressors.’ For what is written about me has its fulfillment.” 38 And they said, “Look, Lord, here are two swords.” And he said to them, “It is enough.”

James B. Jordan in his 1984 book The Law and the Covenant: An Exposition of Exodus 21-23 wrote:

Under pagan influence, Western civilization has sometimes adopted a notion of ‘fair fighting.’ There is no such thing as a fairfight. The notion of a fair fight is Satanic and barbarous. If a child or a man finds himself in a situation where an appeal to arbitration is not possible, he should fight with all he has. If the neighborhood bully catches your child on the way home from school, and your child cannot escape by fleeing, your child should poke a hole in him with a sharp pencil, or kick him in the groin. If the bully’s parents will not restrain him, call the police.

If you or your child has been trained in self defense, of course, you may be able to dispatch your assailant with a minimum of force. Always realize, though, that the man who attacks you, or your wife, has forfeited all his rights to ‘fair’ treatment. Women should be prepared to gouge out the eyes of any man who attacks them.

“Women should be prepared to gouge out the eyes of any man who attacks them” are prophetic words given the revelations of rape, incest and pederasts in Hollywood and the media.

Kyle Kulinski who describes himself on his YouTube channel as a “Liberal Radio Host. Social Democrat. Agnostic-Atheist. Secular Humanist. Loyal to the Facts. Principles over Politicians.” posted the below video commentary about Pat Robertson endorsing guns in churches:

In the video Kulinski, a self proclaimed agnostic-atheist, mocks Robertson using a Southern accent, saying that the idea that only good people with guns can stop bad people with guns is wrong. But that is exactly what happened in 2014 and again in 2017 at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas. In Sutherland Springs two armed Texans pursued Devin Kelly, another self-identified atheist, until Kelly was driven off the road. It appears Kelly, while wounded by one of the Texans, took his own life.

Kulinski states that Harvard research shows that the idea of guns stop violence is wrong. All of the Harvard research studies focus on gun ownership and not the person who either committed a crime using a gun, shot a police officer using a gun and those who committed suicide using a gun. It’s not the gun that kills a person, it is the person who has a gun, either legally or illegally who uses a gun as either the weapon of choice or convenience, that commits the evil act of murder. Focusing on the person, such as the dishonorably discharged Devin Kelly who had weapons illegally according to U.S. Code, is the issue that Kulinski gets sort of when he says that Robertson assumes only good people have guns. But that is not what Robertson said at all.

The Washington Post’s Todd C. Frankel after the shooting in Las Vegas reported:

But one reason the positions [like Kulinski’s and Robertson’s] are so intractable is that no one really knows what works to prevent gun deaths. Gun-control research in the United States essentially came to a standstill in 1996.

After 21 years, the science is stale.

“In the area of what works to prevent shootings, we know almost nothing,” Mark Rosenberg, who, in the mid-1990s, led the CDC’s gun-violence research efforts, said shortly after the San Bernardino shooting in 2015.

While in Japan, President Trump called Kelly a “very deranged individual” saying:

Fortunately somebody else had a gun that was shooting in the opposite direction otherwise … it would have been much worse. This is a mental health problem at the highest level.

Correct Mr. President. These are mentally deranged people. As the President said, “This act of evil occurred as the victims and the families were in their place of sacred worship. We cannot put into words the pain and grief we all feel.”

Are there no safe places anymore for Christians? Will other atheists, who listen to Kulinski’s Secular Talk Show, take it upon themselves to rid the world of other Christians? That’s the issue that must be researched.

RELATED ARTICLE: Current Gun Laws Should Have Made It Impossible for Texas Shooter to Buy Gun

City of Chicago Uses Trace Report to Deflect From Its Own Failed Governance

This week brought more proof that Chicago’s feckless public officials have perfected the art of scapegoating.

On Sunday, the city released the second edition of its Gun Trace Report. The document presents a host of ATF trace data on firearms recovered in the crime-plagued metropolis and attempts to shift blame for the city’s violence to the Illinois General Assembly, the state legislatures of neighboring and far-flung states, federally licensed firearms dealers, and the U.S. Congress. Lacking any introspection, the report fails to acknowledge any role the city might bear for its current predicament.

At the outset, the report asserts that in relation to crime perpetrated with firearms, “Chicago is in many ways a microcosm of a national epidemic.” This is not true. In 2016, Chicago’s murder rate was more than five times the national average. Moreover, Chicago’s murder problem is so acute that it drives statistical analysis of urban violence nationwide. Research from the NYU School of Law’s Brennan Center for Justice published in December 2016, noted, “The 2016 murder rate is projected to be 14 percent higher than last year in the 30 largest cities. Chicago is projected to account for 43.7 percent of the total increase in murders.”

Bizarrely, after calling the city a “microcosm” of a national gun problem, the report then contends that “Chicago faces a unique predicament in enforcement efforts against illegal gun trafficking. Illinois is surrounded by states that lack comprehensive firearms regulations…” First, trace data shows that Illinois is far and away the largest source state for guns recovered in Chicago; with double the number of firearms of the next highest source state. Second, without conceding to Chicago’s definition of “comprehensive,” the geographers at Chicago City Hall might be surprised to learn that California abuts pro-gun states Arizona and Nevada, while New York is adjacent to Vermont and Pennsylvania. Yet, Los Angeles and New York City’s murder rates are a fraction of the Windy City’s.

Despite their contention that out of state private firearms transfers fuel Chicago’s violent crime, a significant portion of the report targets federal licensed firearms dealers, who are required by federal law to conduct a background check prior to transferring a firearm. The report lists the top 10 gun dealers that firearms recovered in Chicago are traced to. Undermining the report’s contention that loose foreign gun laws are to blame for the city’s problems, “seven of the top ten source dealers are within Illinois.”

To remedy this situation, the report promotes the state-level dealer licensing requirements embodied in the Gun Dealer Licensing Act, which is currently making its way through the Illinois General Assembly. According to the report, “adding state and local law enforcement could greatly enhance regulatory enforcement over gun dealers” and the measure’s requirement to video record all business in a gun store will “deter straw purchasers.”

It is not clear how city officials expect this to reduce the illegal acquisition of firearms. Under current Illinois law, residents must acquire a Firearm Owners Identification Card in order to possess or purchase a firearm. Therefore, prospective straw purchasers must make their identities known to the state government and a dealer in order to purchase a firearm from a gun store. That sale is also documented in the dealer’s records, as required by federal law. A criminal already willing to be documented in this manner is unlikely concerned with how often a dealer’s books are audited for paperwork errors or the superfluous video recordation of his criminal acts. The chief effect of this dealer licensing legislation is to make the business of legally selling firearms prohibitively expensive.

The report also advocates for a state law restricting private transfers between FOID holders, and firearms registration. Missing from the report is any explanation of why those who would divert firearms into the criminal market, who have already displayed a willingness to expose themselves to severe state and federal criminal liability, would be deterred by these additional measures.

As ATFNRA, and the National Shooting Sports Foundation have acknowledged, straw purchasers are a real problem. However, an effective means of thwarting straw purchasers would be to prosecute them to the fullest extent of the law.

Illinois already has an “unlawful purchase of a firearm” statute that targets anyone “who knowingly purchases or attempts to purchase a firearm with the intent to deliver that firearm to another person who is prohibited by federal or State law from possessing a firearm.” Violation of this statute in relation to the purchase of a single firearm carries a maximum sentence of seven years in prison. Further, Illinois law requires a private individual who transfers a firearm to determine the transferee’s status as a FOID holder. Failure to do so can carry a sentence of up to three years in prison.

In what the Chicago police called “not an uncommon example” of straw purchasing, in September 2016, police arrested 22-year-old Simone Mousheh for selling two guns to a gang-affiliated man in Chicago. Reports indicated that Mousheh was “aware that he did not possess an FOID card and that he was on probation for domestic battery.” One of the firearms Mousheh sold was later recovered from a juvenile on Chicago’s West Side. Following a guilty plea, Mousheh was sentenced to 15 days in an alternative work program, 12 months of probation, and a $679 fine.

This sort of lackluster enforcement of existing gun laws might be why a Cook County Jail inmate told a researcher in 2013, “All they need is one person who got a gun card in the ‘hood’ and everybody got one.”

Chicago’s trace report also raises important questions about the permissible use of ATF trace data. Since 2003, Congress has restricted the use of trace data under the “Tiahrt Amendment.” Named after former U.S. Rep. Todd Tiahrt (R-Kan.), the amendment permits federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies to have trace data “in connection with and for use in a bona fide criminal investigation or prosecution.” ATF and the Fraternal Order of Police support the Tiahrt Amendment as public disclosure of trace data could imperil ongoing law enforcement investigations, and according to FOP National President Chuck Canterbury, “threaten[s] the safety of officers and witnesses.”

ATF has taken issue with the use of trace data in Chicago’s recent report. A report from Michael Bloomberg anti-gun mouthpiece The Trace, cites an email from ATF spokeswoman Marky Markos who wrote that the Chicago report was “a prohibited use of the data.” Markos also pointed out that, “Through the eTrace [Memorandum of Understanding], parties agree that no data will be publicly disseminated, and that it is law enforcement sensitive information as it relates to criminal investigations.” eTrace is an online trace request submission module for law enforcement agencies.

Chicago issued a flippant response to ATF’s charges. Offering a creative interpretation of when it is necessary to comply with federal law, Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s spokesman, Adam Collins, stated, “This is just classic… The Trump administration is arguing it would be better to hide the facts on the deadly effects of gun trafficking than partner on a solution? Well, burying your head in the sand won’t change the truth and it won’t solve the problem.”

It is ironic that Chicago would accuse the Trump administration of “burying [their] head in the sand” on this issue. The discouraging truth about Chicago’s violence is that it is the product of a host of societal factors – including a lack of vigorous criminal prosecution – that cannot be remedied by a change to the current gun laws. Faced with this complex problem, Chicago’s public officials have repeatedly chosen to disparage their fellow Illinoisans and law-abiding gun owners throughout the country, rather than rise to meet the challenge. The city officials’ continued refusal to confront their own shortcomings and the city’s more intractable problems only serves to prolong the suffering of Chicago’s 2.7 million residents.

From Kneeling to Stepping On Freedom

Why kneel in disrespect to the flag when you can stand and trample the Constitution? That appears to be the thinking, at least, of the NFL’s San Francisco 49ers football team.

Let’s face it, the team does not have a lot going for it these days. With a losing streak currently standing at 0-7, they recently posted a questionnaire asking fans how important it was for them to even win games. Even more problematic, the team has been at the epicenter of a controversy concerning the NFL and divisive on-field national anthem protests.

These protests started last fall with former team quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s decision to first sit, then kneel, during the pre-game tradition of singing the national anthem, in order to protest alleged social injustice.  Kaepernick’s actions spawned similar “kneeling protests” across the NFL and other sports leagues. Those protests, along with Kaepernick’s decision to wear socks depicting police officers as pigs, have in turn helped crater NFL ratings.

Now the 49ers have “upped the ante”, following in the footsteps of recently disgraced Hollywood media mogul Harvey Weinstein by targeting the Second Amendment and advocating for gun control legislation in order to change the narrative and deflect attention from the team’s substantial problems. The 49ers announced this week that the team is pledging $500,000 towards a campaign “which will advocate for legislation banning ‘bump stocks’ and other mechanisms that allow semi automatic weapons to become automatic weapons, as well as silencers and armor piercing bullets.”

Such anti-gun advocacy will almost certainly stir the ire of an already frustrated fan base who, as ratings indicate, want to keep politics out of sports.  Perhaps the feeling is that because San Francisco has long been among the nation’s leading bastions of anti-gun fervor, this move would be seen as positive by a weakening fan base.  But, we remind NFL leadership of the dangerous trap-door that all too many have failed to see.  Put simply, ticket-paying fans have no interest in further incorporating divisive political issues into packaged entertainment, and this includes football and other sporting events.

But don’t take our word for it, just ask Hollywood.  Last year, Miss Sloane, a political thriller starring Jessica Chastain, was widely lauded by anti-gun elites and gun control advocates for taking on the NRA, but was among the top 100 worst box-office releases of the last 35 years.

While the merits of kneeling during the national anthem to forward a social agenda will continue to be debated, the intention of the 49ers, at least in this case, is clear.  Taking a knee is no longer enough; now they are willing to push for restrictions on our Right to Keep and Bear Arms.

NRA Doesn’t ‘Buy’ Politicians, but Gun Controllers Do

The gun control movement often exhibits a dearth of critical thinking skills. Nowhere is this more apparent than in much of the gun control community’s insistence on claiming that NRA has the resources and ability to “buy” politicians.

Whenever gun control enters the national spotlight anti-gun activists and the media level this lazy charge. Editorial pages are replete with cartoons depicting unscrupulous politicians being swayed by NRA cash. Following the tragedy in Las Vegas, the New York Times and Washington Post produced lists of politicians who had received NRA donations. In a recent error-filled monologue, late night comedian Jimmy Kimmel claimed that NRA had some lawmakers’ privates “in a money clip.”

Aside from the silliness of such arguments from a movement that is in large part bank-rolled by a single billionairemore sophisticated observers from across the political spectrum understand that lavish donations to lawmakers is not how NRA influences public policy. In a recent piece addressing this topic, National Review Editor Jonah Goldberg took issue with the Washington Post’s list of NRA donees, which claimed, “Since 1998, the National Rifle Association has donated $4.23 million to current members of Congress.” Putting NRA’s contributions in context, Goldberg explained,

In terms of lobbying and political contributions, the NRA and the gun industry generally spend next to nothing compared with the big players. According to OpenSecrets, the NRA spent $1.1 million on contributions in 2016 and $3 million on lobbying. The food and beverage industry has spent $14 million on lobbying in 2017 alone. Alphabet, Google’s parent company, spent $9 million on contributions in 2016.

Goldberg went on to note,

The simple reality is that the NRA doesn’t need to spend a lot of money convincing politicians to protect gun rights. All it needs to do is spend a little money clarifying that a great many of those politicians’ constituents care deeply about gun rights.

An October 2015 New Yorker article by James Surowiecki came to a similar conclusion. The piece quoted UCLA Law Professor Adam Winkler, who explained why NRA is able to influence politicians without spending as much as other interest groups, stating, “N.R.A. members are politically engaged and politically active. They call and write elected officials, they show up to vote, and they vote based on the gun issue.”

A few of the more honest gun control advocates acknowledge this reality. In 2016, the president of Global Strategy Group, who was hired to consult for gun control group Americans for Responsible Solution, said to Politico, “[NRA’s] money isn’t that big… It’s not what they do. Their power rests in their stupid postcards and their ability to terrorize members on the Hill and have them panicked about their rating.”

Gun control supporters who peddle the myth about NRA money aren’t only wrong, they are ignoring team gun control’s own sordid history of buying politicians. And forget Michael Bloomberg for the moment, gun control supporters have purchased lawmakers using taxpayer dollars.

In a recently published Daily Beast podcast, Patrick Griffin, who served as assistant to the President for legislative affairs during the Clinton Administration, shed light on how government resources were used to secure votes for the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994, which included the federal “assault weapons” ban.

Gun control supporters who peddle the myth about NRA money aren’t only wrong, they are ignoring team gun control’s own sordid history of buying politicians. And forget Michael Bloomberg for the moment, gun control supporters have purchased lawmakers using taxpayer dollars.

Explaining how the process worked, Griffin told the interviewer, “The candy store was a little more open back then… There were earmarks. There were things that were in the pipeline that you could loosen up. There were plane rides on Air Force One…. We sold anything.”

Getting more specific, Griffin recalled that in exchange for voting for the crime bill one lawmaker “wanted us to invite him to a state dinner with his daughter.” Clarifying, Griffin added, “But he had no daughter… Yes, he wanted to take his girlfriend.” At another point in the podcast, Griffin recalled acquiring another lawmaker’s vote for the crime bill by getting the Secretary of the Interior to advance the approval process on a Native American casino in the member’s district.

Griffin’s account is similar to one offered in April 2013 by an individual Politico described as “an official with one of the major gun-control groups” following the failed Manchin/Toomey/Schumer background check vote. The gun control official told the publication, “Bribery isn’t what it once was… The government has no money. Once upon a time you would throw somebody a post office or a research facility in times like this. Frankly, there’s not a lot of leverage.”

Sadly, given that mounting evidence of the invalidity of the myth about NRA buying influence hasn’t been enough to deter gun controllers from repeating this fallacy, it’s unlikely that exposing their rank hypocrisy will either.

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