Protect Our Gun Rights (POGR), the group pushing Initiative 591, last night issued a fund raising appeal in reaction to Monday evening’s “swanky fundraiser in Medina” for elitist backers of Initiative 594, while gun control backers announced a gathering this Thursday evening at a Bellevue library designed to gin up support for the 15-page gun control measure.
Tomorrow night’s event is sponsored by Organizing for Action, the group that uses Barack Obama’s campaign logo, and will feature Cheryl Stumbo, a survivor of the 2006 Jewish Federation shooting. She will talk about how Naveed Afzal Haq shot her and five other women on that hot July afternoon.
The program will be held at the Newport Way Library in Bellevue, starting at 6:30 p.m. with a potluck dinner.
Aside from the fact that event organizers appear to have a spelling deficiency – “Come here (sic) Cheryl’s story…” – there is another problem with the program. The promo urges attendance so that people can learn what Stumbo “is doing to curb gun violence and why President Obama’s supporters need to make sure I-594, Washington Alliance for Gun Responsibility…for criminal background checks, becomes Washington law.”
Using the Jewish Federation shooting to press a background check initiative is questionable because gunman Naveed Haq passed a background check when he bought a .45-caliber Ruger handgun he carried that day from a Kennewick gun shop.
There’s also a bit of dyslexia in the announcement, which notes, “Washington State's Gun Violence Protection Issue Lead, Colleen Bryan and an organizer from WA Alliance will explain why and how each of us, for our safety, must make sure we have the signatures needed for I-495 (sic) to be on the ballot in November 2014.”
Meanwhile, the POGR appeals over the name of Bellevue gun rights advocate Alan Gottlieb. He chairs the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, which is part of the POGR coalition. That statewide coalition also includes the Washington Arms Collectors (WAC), Hunters Heritage Council and, perhaps most importantly, the Washington State Law Enforcement Firearms Instructors Association. It’s a key law enforcement group with members from police departments all over the state.
In his funding appeal, Gottlieb notes, “Our opponents just had a swanky fundraiser…in Medina and are getting a number of contributions in the tens, and hundreds of thousands of dollars from Seattle area political elitists pushing a gun prohibition agenda. If that wasn’t bad enough, billionaire gun-control ‘philanthropist’ New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has pledged his financial support to passing gun control here control in Washington State.”
Bloomberg, who will leave office Dec. 31, has already indicated he will be supporting gun control efforts in several states, including Washington and Oregon.
Last night at WAC’s office in Renton, the group’s board of directors agreed to provide additional support to the I-591 campaign, and to encourage their 19,000-plus members to use the final weeks of 2013 gathering a “cushion” of petition signatures, and more importantly, open their wallets. WAC President John Rodabaugh candidly acknowledged that WAC members hardly have the deep pockets of the Seattle-based gun control backers.
However, as Gottlieb’s fund raising appeal noted, “They thought they could buy the election and beat the pro-gun grassroots activists in the Colorado recalls, (but) they were wrong. Let’s stop them cold here in Washington...