Yesterday’s Seattle Times report that U.S. Senator Patty Murray, an “F”-rated anti-gun Democrat, will seek a fifth term in 2016 is being met with groans, and not just from gun owners, but from many of her constituents on other issues, as Times reader reaction suggests.
Murray, who was first elected in 1992 as the “mom in tennis shoes,” should be asked repeatedly when she has ever fought for the interests of more than a million Evergreen State gun owners. The 63-year-old Murray got her “F” rating from the National Rifle Association the proverbial “old fashioned way,” gun rights activists will say. She earned it.
She has voted against national concealed carry reciprocity. She voted for the Brady Law and the semi-auto ban. She voted against carrying firearms in national parks for personal protection. She voted to ban full-capacity magazines. She voted against allowing firearms to be carried aboard Amtrak trains in checked luggage. Murray did vote for an amendment that prohibited confiscation of legally-owned firearms in an emergency in 2006.
Washington, like California, is represented by two pro-gun control Democrats in the Senate, leaving gun owners in both states asking repeatedly, “Who represents our views? Who speaks for us in the U.S. Senate?”
Who, indeed? Perhaps between now and the 2016 election that Sen. Murray is eyeballing, Washington State gun owners will make that a campaign issue at every public event, every campaign stop and every freeway overpass.
MEANWHILE, as this column reported Saturday, proponents of Initiative 594 have taken a step downward by attacking NRA lobbyist Brian Judy over a remark he made almost two weeks ago during a Senate Law & Justice Committee hearing on their 18-page gun control measure. Activists are talking about it at Northwest Firearms.
It’s a full court press, too, on the Washington Alliance for Gun Responsibility’s Facebook page, and on their website, where I-594 sponsor Cheryl Stumbo – a victim of the Seattle Jewish Federation attack that would not have been prevented by the initiative language because gunman Naveed Haq did pass a background check – asserts Judy was blaming the victim for the Sandy Hook tragedy.
Maybe all of this attention to Mr. Judy is because he so effectively dismantled their proposal in front of the Senate committee, so the attempt to discredit him on a personal level for allegedly “mocking” a serious situation.
Judy remarked that the Sandy Hook gunman had not passed a background check, alluding to Adam Lanza’s acquisition of his firearms as the “murder your mother loophole.” Lanza killed his mother before taking her guns and driving her car to the school in Newton, Conn. Perhaps the best perspective on Judy’s comment came from Bellevue gun rights advocate Alan Gottlieb, first reported in an update of Saturday’s column.
“I was sitting right next to Brian Judy when he made that comment,” Gottlieb, who chairs the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, and who was speaking in support of Initiative 591, recalled. “He did not offer the comment in a joking manner but, rather, seriously to highlight the absurdity (and dishonesty) of the other side’s continued harping about the non-existent ‘gun show’ loophole. He was trying to point out the absurd with the equally absurd.”
On the subject of absurd, there are assertions that Rep. Mike Hope is no longer on the House Judiciary Committee because he was behind a compromise effort last year relating to background checks that even had support from Gottlieb until anti-gunners successfully scuttled a key tenet that would have abolished the state pistol registry. According to the Seattle Time story, even Hope has dismissed that suggestion, but it is more ammunition, even if it is blank ammunition, that anti-gunners can use in what is becoming an increasingly contentious campaign to push more gun restrictions in Olympia.