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Pro-gun or anti-gun? Will the real Heath Shuler please stand up?

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NRA apologists have insisted that Congressman Heath Shuler is a Second Amendment supporter, as demonstrated by bills he has cosponsored and votes he has made. But is he really, or is he posturing? He has a history of cosponsoring ostensibly pro-gun bills which, coincidentally, never see the light of a committee hearing, as documented in “A response from the NRA?

And few but the NRA would deny that brokering House passage of the DISCLOSE Act is an attempt by Shuler and House Democrats to silence conservative organizations in general and gun rights groups in particular during elections. (Although the NRA claims Shuler did not broker passage of HB 5175, POLITICO says otherwise.) Those who claim DISCLOSE is “not a Second Amendment issue” should listen to Gun Owners of America Executive Director Larry Pratt in his interview with fellow gun rights examiner David Codrea:

“GOA also rated the vote on the DISCLOSE Act which was McCain-Feingold on steroids. The NRA and GOA went to the Supreme Court seeking to overturn McCain-Feingold, so obviously the NRA sees the danger to the Second Amendment in gagging political speech. Unfortunately, the NRA did not take a position on the DISCLOSE Act. Attempts to stifle the political speech of Second Amendment organizations is without question an attack on your gun rights … we ARE a single-issue group, we just recognize that our enemies are attacking us on multiple fronts.”

And now a brouhaha is brewing in western North Carolina between the organization I direct, Grass Roots North Carolina,and the NRA over its endorsement of Shuler. An excellent (and objective) synopsis of the battle by John Richardson can be found on “No Lawyers -- Only Guns And Money.”

So what about the votes NRA apologists cite in supporting Shuler?

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA PERSONAL PROTECTION ACT

This shill known as the D.C. Personal Protection Act has been introduced at NRA behest for the better part of two decades, giving cover to mediocre incumbents who can cosponsor it or vote for it, all secure in the knowledge that it will never become law.

Worse, it was widely conjectured that the 2003-2004 version was run by the NRA as a means of rendering moot the litigation which eventually forced the U.S. Supreme Court to recognize the Second Amendment in D.C. v. Heller. At around the same time, the NRA was also trying to derail what was then Parker v. D.C. by having its own copycat case consolidated into Parker. In the words of Alan Gura, the lawyer who won the Parker/Heller case:

“Before the court could rule in our case, the National Rifle Association sponsored a copycat lawsuit, entitled Seegars v. Ashcroft (subsequently Gonzales), and immediately sought to have their lawsuit joined with ours. The NRA had tried to dissuade the filing of Parker. Having failed in that effort, they lobbied unsuccessfully to alter our litigation strategy. Seegars was designed to raise issues we had rejected in our case, in an attempt to have the courts avoid interpretation of the Second Amendment.”

In 108th Congress (2003-2004, pre-Shuler), the D.C. Personal Protection Act was H.R. 3193, which passed the House by 250-171 before disappearing into oblivion in the Senate. In the 109th Congress (2005-2006, also pre-Shuler), it was H.R. 1288, which drew 235 sponsors but no committee hearing, once again killing it.

In the 110th Congress (2007-2008), it was H.R. 1399, which never got a hearing. Interestingly, Shuler was one of 248 sponsors but, in a chamber where 218 signatures on a “discharge petition” can force a bill out of committee, the petition for H.R. 1399 drew only 166, suggesting that some of its “cosponsors” weren’t all that interested in getting it heard. Significantly, Shuler was NOT among signers of the discharge petition. The Act also surfaced as the Childers Amendment to H.R. 6842, which Shuler voted for but which also never became law.

H.R. 6691, also of the 110th Congress, apparently decided to really mean it, this time, and was called the “Second Amendment Enforcement Act,” but “enforced” nothing because despite 135 cosponsors, it never got a hearing.

H.R. 5162, introduced in the current 111th Congress under the high-minded title “To restore Second Amendment rights in the District of Columbia,” garnered 159 sponsors before in April, 2010 disappearing into oblivion in the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

So did Shuler cosponsor and vote for the D.C. Personal Protection Act? Sure he did: He and a majority of other “Second Amendment supporters” who, despite being in the majority, can never quite seem to get the bill passed. In reality, only one effort stands a chance of bringing the Second Amendment to the District of Columbia, and that is the Heller decision which the NRA apparently tried to derail.

GUNS IN NATIONAL PARKS

Says the NRA apologist who commented rather extensively on my previous columns and might be NRA Director of Federal Affairs Chuck Cunningham, Shuler “Voted last year for (the Senate amendment to H.R. 627) allowing carry license or permit holders to carry and transport firearms for self-defense in national parks and wildlife refuges.”

Absent background, there is a measure of truth to this. The Senate made an amendment to credit card reform bill H.R. 627. (Specifically, S. Amdt. 1067, made by Sen. Tom Coburn to another amendment, S. Amdt. 1058). And the House did vote to concur on that language separately as Section 512, which passed in a somewhat lopsided 279-147 vote, opposed primarily by the most anti-gun House members.

Neither GOA nor our organization elected to use the vote for candidate evaluation purposes for a number of reasons, including the fact that it was actually the previous Bush administration which promulgated the regulation allowing guns in parks (Section 512 was merely intended to require courts to adhere to the law), and the fact that it doesn’t actually permit guns in parks. What it says is that guns are permitted in parks if the state in which the park falls allows it. This ambiguity has yet to be resolved. Indeed, when I called the North Carolina Attorney General’s office on it earlier this year, they refused to supply an opinion.

But those who consider the Section 512 vote to be pro-gun should equally consider Shuler’s (and Larry Kissell’s) previous votes, most succinctly expressed by GOA, which include:

Gun Ban In National Parks
Motion To Recommit
07/10/2008
House Roll Call No. 483
110th Congress, 2nd Session
Failed: 202-211 (see complete tally)

On July 10, 2008, the House of Representatives narrowly defeated an attempt by Republicans (by a vote of 202-211) to prevent a 600-mile gun ban along the Washington-Rochambeau National Historic Trail from going into effect. Instead, the House voted to place the trail under the jurisdiction of the Department of Interior and the National Park Service, thus subjecting the entire trail to a gun ban. A vote in favor of sending HR 1286 back to committee -- with instructions to allow state and local gun laws to govern firearms possession rather than National Park Service regulations -- is rated as a pro-gun vote.

Shuler: No (anti-gun)
Kissell: Not yet elected

------------------------------------------------------------

Omnibus Public Land Managment Act
03/11/2009
House Roll Call No. 117
111th Congress, 1st Session
Failed: 282-144 (see complete tally)

On March 11, 2009, the House voted to "suspend the rules" so they could immediately pass the massive (1200+ pages) expansion of federal control of land that had originated in the Senate as S. 22. Since National Park land is subject to a gun ban, the bill would have greatly reduced the area of the country in which citizens can carry guns for self-defense. GOA had fought to get pro-gun language included to protect gun rights, but a backroom deal was struck whereby "hunting and recreational shooting" would be protected -- but not carrying for self-defense. The leadership did not want to allow any further pro-gun amendments, so they tried to suspend the rules so that no one could do anything. Such a suspension of the rules requires a 2/3 vote. That is why the motion failed, even though more Reps. (282) voted in favor of the ploy than against it (144). A vote against suspending the rules is considered a pro-gun vote.

Shuler: Y (anti-gun)
Kissell: Y (anti-gun)

------------------------------------------------------------

National Parks Gun Ban
House passage of the Lands bill
03/25/2009
House Roll Call No. 153
111th Congress, 1st Session
Passed: 285-140 (see complete tally)

National Parks Gun Ban (3). On March 25, 2009, the House of Representatives voted 285-140 to pass HR 146, an anti-gun lands bill that will greatly expand National Park Service lands, and thus, expand firearms restrictions into millions of additional acres of land. A "no" vote is rated as a pro-gun vote …

Kissell: Y (anti-gun)
Shuler: Y (anti-gun)

BANKRUPTCY PROTECTION

Say the NRA apologists, Shuler “[v]oted this year for the Protecting Gun Owners in Bankruptcy Act (H.R. 5827), which would ensure that a person who filed for bankruptcy would not lose their firearms…”

Ignoring for a moment that I have never had a single member of GRNC tell us that his should be a legislative priority, one is forced to ask: “Is this really a Second Amendment issue?” I’ve even had a Libertarian-leaning soul express that if one declares bankruptcy and stiffs creditors, no personal property should be exempt from bankruptcy proceedings.

THE ‘CIRCULAR FIRING SQUAD’

“Sebastian” of the blog “Snowflakes in Hell,” sees it differently. Describing the split between GRNC and NRA on Shuler as a “circular firing squad,” he says:

“GRNC is not only wrong on Schuler, they are supremely wrong. They are lambasting the one Democrat who tried to solve this problem in favor of all 501(c)(4) non-profits, including GOA, including CCRKBA, and including GRNC. I will back GRNC to the hilt when they do good work like participate in lawsuits to try to get North Carolina’s emergency powers laws tossed out, but they are wrong to attack Schuler on this issue, and I believe they are shooting the rest of us in the foot in their attempts to smear him on an issue totally unrelated to gun rights.”

This is, of course, straight from the NRA talking points and is what the NRA is claiming in postcards and e-mail alerts which respond to GRNC postcards, radio spots and phone calls into the 11th Congressional District.

But the NRA rationalization has one glaring flaw: If Shuler is such a friend of gun owners that he tried to exempt non-profits such as GOA, CCRKBA and GRNC from the DISCLOSE Act, when the final version voted on in the House failed to contain protection for gun groups, why did he still vote for it?

Why the split constitutes a “circular firing squad” is unclear. If Shuler wins, Congress gets what the NRA seems to think is a great gun rights supporter. If GRNC 4-star Republican challenger Jeff Miller wins, Congress gets a guy who supports concealed carry, opposes gun control, and knows exactly why the Second Amendment was drafted into the Bill of Rights. Better yet, transfer of control of the House would dump Nancy Pelosi (or whichever slightly less rabid liberal might replace her) from the Speaker’s chair.

From the NRA perspective, what’s to lose, except perhaps credibility and money?

SO WHAT DID NRA USE IN EVALUATING SHULER?

Said Larry Pratt in his interview with David Codrea:

“Consider the dozens of so-called Blue Dogs who were endorsed by the NRA this year. Only three of them got an A or A- from GOA. The NRA obviously did not count the four votes on overturning the ban on guns in national parks, one of which also involved an effort to greatly expand national parkland, thus eliminating hunting and the use of self-defense firearms on those lands.”

We can never be sure, of course, because the NRA won’t tell us, and because NRA ratings and endorsements are subjective. But as the NRA tells it, Shuler’s endorsement had absolutely nothing to do with the fact that Shuler exempted the NRA – and among gun groups only the NRA – from the free speech restrictions of the DISCLOSE Act.

Comments

  • sidwasout 3 years ago

    Paul,

    I've almost got my piece done, but I need you to tell me all the bills GRNC used for its rating scheme from '94 on. I've got every bill you mentioned in the Holliman piece, so that covers everything from his first election to now, and I have even added a few you "forgot" to mention (I wonder why). I'll just need what you used before Holliman was elected. I know you'll be happy to do this, since you claim NRA will not and you seem to consider that a real issue.

    BTW, I see you've been busy deleting posts that contradict you. And you call yourself a defender of free speech? Very ironic, yet again.

  • Jeff Rau 3 years ago

    Considering it took Paul hours to dig up the info on one candidate you can't seriously think we are going to dig up every vote for the last 16 years. What Paul said basically is that GRNC has a formula to evaluate candidates. And GRNC doesn't keep the formula a secret. If you look at the GRNC voter guide the columns clearly show the candidates survey score, percentage vote, and other factors. To post all the gritty details would take extensive work.

  • Profile picture of jrp1947
    jrp1947 3 years ago

    If the man cannot get the job done no matter how many times he sponsors or signs on to a bill then he should be rejected for not doing his job. In the real world people like that get fired. He gets paid and shows nothing for his pay. Send him back to a counter job someplace where he is not dangerous to the public welfare.

  • Rusty Shackleford 3 years ago

    Valone couldn't find any votes since he was searching for that very little known Congressman from North Carolina's 91's District-Keith Schulers.

  • Rusty Shackleford 3 years ago

    Valone couldn't find any votes since he was searching for that very little known Congressman from North Carolina's 91's District-Keith Schulers.

  • Jeff Rau 3 years ago

    Sid,
    It takes hours to look up details on one candidate. You can't seriously think Paul is going to dig up every vote in the past 16 years. GRNC has a formula to evaluate candidates and makes no secret of the formula. GRNC voter guides clearly show the candidates survey score, percentage of votes, and other factors. Posting all the details would take an enormous amount of work.

    What does the NRA really tell us about how they rate a candidate?

  • Truth and Freedom 3 years ago

    When the NRA-PVF (www.nrapvf.org) endorsed Congressman Heath Shuler for reelection this year, they report "Why We Endorse This Candidate" at www.nrapvf.org/grades-endorsements/2010/north-carolina/us-house/district....

  • sidwasout 3 years ago

    I just want to know the bills GRNC scored, Jeff. How hard is that? Are you telling me Paul doesn't have a database that shows every bill on which he/GRNC took a position each session? I'll do the final work on each legislator, but if GRNC wants to be "open," about its process, it should be willing to share which bills it scored. Again, how hard is that? I already have all the bills covering Holliman's time in office (plus some he "forgot"), so I just need the ones before he came in.

    As for NRA, the NRAPVF website has an explanationa as to what the grades mean. It refers predominantly to voting records, but also references the candidate questionnaire. Kind of like GRNC.

  • Ken Soderstrom 3 years ago

    Chuck,

    NRA’s "Why We Endorse This Candidate" apology for Shuler consists of nothing but easy votes (like the whack-a-mole District of Columbia Personal Protection Act boondoggle that actually undermined Heller). There’s no “there” there. And given Shuler’s DISCLOSE sell-out of the First Amendment, NRA should be helping NC gun owners look for a pot of tar and bag of feathers.

    What NRA really needs to explain to North Carolinians is why they would endorse Shuler over Jeff Miller, who might actually effectively promote the Second Amendment for us (while leaving the First alone).

    Where’s NRA’s “Why We DIDN’T Endorse Jeff Miller” apology? That’s the one we’re interested in. And while you’re at it get to prepping one for Sharon Angle in Nevada. Chances are she’s going to spank NRA’s pal Harry “Sotomayor and Kagan, please) Reid, and NRA’s going to have a PO’ed Senator on their hands. Is this part of Chris “Mister Spock” Cox’s 3-D Vulcan chess strategy (you might let him know that there are treatments available for delusional behavior)?

    Of course we can’t forget poor Rayne Brown who is entirely pro-2A. Why didn’t NRA endorse her? Where’s NRA’s apology for endorsing her competition in Hugh “Hoplophobe Castle Doctrine Killer” Holliman?

    Chuck, you guys are all over the map. You’re not scoring any points by trying to promote “political diversity”. NRA needs to be the “single issue” organization it claims to be.

  • Truth and Freedom 3 years ago

    No votes -- Paul Valone falsely claimed that Congressman Heath Shuler does not "really have a voting record on a strictly gun-related bill." Now you say they were easy votes. You both need to get together to get your lies straight.

    No apology needed for Jeff Miller. What has he done to protect our Second Amendment rights? He "might" do what?. On what basis of his pro-gun actions -- other than a good candidate questionnaire response -- do you base your hypothetical? Has Jeff Miller:

    VOTED this year for the Protecting Gun Owners in Bankruptcy Act (H.R. 5827 in the 111th Congress), which would ensure that a person who filed for bankruptcy would not lose their firearms, thereby maintaining the fundamental right to self-defense.

    VOTED last year for (the Senate amendment to H.R. 627) allowing carry license or permit holders to carry and transport firearms for self-defense in national parks and wildlife refuges.

    VOTED (for the Altmire amendment to H.R. 2016) in 2008 to protect hunting, fishing, trapping and recreational shooting on public land under the control of the Bureau of Land Management.

    Cosponsored the Second Amendment Enforcement Act (H.R. 5162 in the 111th Congress and H.R. 6691 in the 110th Congress) and District of Columbia Personal Protection Act (H.R. 1399 in the 110th Congress) that would repeal the D.C. gun ban/registration statute and restore the right of self-defense to law-abiding residents of our nation’s capital – also VOTED for the Childers amendment to H.R. 6842 in the 110th Congress to accomplish this.

    Contrary to your belief, the District of Columbia Personal Protection Act did not undermine the Heller case. In fact, its cosponsors were the base of the signatures for the pro-gun congressional amicus brief in that case that helped result in the 5-4 rulling.

  • Ken Soderstrom 3 years ago

    You keep serving Rice Krispies, Chuck. Where's the beef?

    Now if "Shut 'em Up" Shuler had opposed DISCLOSE, things may have gone better for him.

    But don't feel too bad (even if you've got another person in Congress PO'ed at you and NRA): You're right to keep and bear arms will be better off :)!

  • Rusty Shackleford 3 years ago

    Kenny spewed:

    "And while you’re at it get to prepping one for Sharon Angle in Nevada. Chances are she’s going to spank NRA’s pal Harry “Sotomayor and Kagan, please) Reid, and NRA’s going to have a PO’ed Senator on their hands."

    How's that new Senator working out for you Kenny?

  • Ken Soderstrom 3 years ago

    So Russel, Sid, Chuck and the rest of the NRA gang are pleased that Harry Reid, the guy who voted to confirm Sotomayor and Kagan, will be leading the US Senate for a couple more years.

    NC gun owners: This is very, very bad for your Second Amendment rights. There is a very thin, one vote margin on the US Supreme Court that supports the Second Amendment as it's written. NRA has been supporting Senators like Harry Reid, trying to curry political favor. By doing this they're endangering the currently pro-2A Supreme Court. Of course if the Second is compromised they'll probably attract even more members, and will be able to pay themselves huge bonuses on top of thier alread mid-six to seven figure salaries.

    Remember NC, Barack "no clinging to guns, please" Obama is doing the nominating of Justices that serve for life.

    Thanks for an anti-gun Supreme Court, NRA. I'd say some stronger things, but it wouldn't be polite.

  • madashell 3 years ago

    Thank You Paul for another hard-hitting article!

    The only thing the NRA apologist want to do is dance around an issue even when presented with the facts.

    Paul I believe my “Rights come from God so I associate my gun rights with my belief in God.

    Personally I’m sick and tired of having the NRA cutting deals with my religious belief.

    Here in Illinois thanks to the NRA I have to have a FOID card which is a special permission slip from the State to excursive my belief/obedience to God!

    Prior to the passage of the 68GCA and the Illinois FOID card law many of these disqualifiers didn’t exist; whether directly or indirectly these laws were passed with the help of the NRA

    On January 17, 1968 President Johnson said he wanted gun mail order sales stopped. The “NEXT” day the NRA seconded Johnson’s proposal.

    Paul ending mail order sales have damaged our culture in was that we can’t imagine, today.

    In 1933 my grandmother purchased a 22 rifle through the mail for $1.75 for my father, yet my grandmother would never go into the gun shop because she would feel out of place.

    Ending mail order sales affected not men buying guns but women. I believe that the reason so many women are afraid of guns today or support gun control goes back to the ending of mail order sales.

  • madashell 3 years ago

    I made a spelling error I meant to write “Exercise” not excursive although the my gun rights have digressed thanks to the NRA

  • Profile picture of Paul Valone
    Paul Valone 3 years ago

    madashell:

    Thanks for the historical perspective. You reminded me of an excellent piece by VinSuprynowicz about just that issue. Here are the opening paragraphs with a link for the rest.

    Paul

    America's largest gun control organization

    by Vin Suprynowicz

    On Jan. 16, 1968, in an address to the New York State University law school in Buffalo, Sen. Robert Kennedy, D-N.Y., stated: "I think it is a terrible indictment of the National Rifle Association that they haven't supported any legislation to try and control the misuse of rifles and pistols in this country."

    NRA Executive Vice President Franklin L. Orth took great umbrage at this remark in the October 1968 issue of the NRA's magazine, The American Rifleman, terming Sen. Kennedy's accusation "a great smear of a great American organization." Mr. Orth then went on to point out, "The National Rifle Association has been in support of workable, enforceable gun control legislation since its very inception in 1871."

    Really? But the NRA has always been portrayed in the mainstream press as a radical anti-gun-control organization. Is it? Has it ever been?

    In that 1968 issue of The American Rifleman, associate editor Alan C. Webber picked up the defense of the NRA's gun-control credentials. I quote again from the NRA's own, official organ:

    "Item: The late Karl T. Frederick, an NRA president, served for years as special consultant with the Commissioners on Uniform State Laws to frame the Uniform Firearms Act of 1930. ... Salient provisions of the Act require a license to carry a pistol concealed on one's person or in a vehicle; require the purchaser of a pistol to give information about himself which is submitted by the seller to the local police authorities; specify a 48-hour time lapse between application for purchase and delivery."

    http://www.citizenreviewonline.org/june_2001/americas_largest_gun_contro...

  • Ken Soderstrom 3 years ago

    Excellent reminder about what happened in '68, madashell. Thanks for sharing your experience.

  • Truth and Freedom 3 years ago

    New questions for GOA apologists since Paul/Ken have evaded the others?

    Can you explain why GOA endorsed only 64 U.S. House candidates and did not endorse the pro-gun Republican candidate opposing the anti-gun Democrat in the competitive Senate races in Connecticut, Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

    Also, there is a huge difference between endorsing candidates and supporting candidates. The NRA Political Victory Fund is reported to be spending $20 million in this election cycle (www.dailycaller.com/2010/11/01/thedc-exclusive-nra-spends-20-million-thi...). According to reports to the Federal Election Commission, GOA is spending very little to support their few endorsed candidates. Their largest PAC expenditure was for their accountant (over $15,000) and that amount is more than one-third of their total 2010 expenditures to date). As of October 13, GOA spent $3,559 for its endorsed Senate candidates and $2,877 for its endorsed House candidates. Over $20 million by the NRA and less than $10,000 by GOA – who is doing more to protect your Second Amendment rights in the 2010 election cycle?

  • Profile picture of Paul Valone
    Paul Valone 3 years ago

    Paul Valone

    Thanks, Chuck. If anybody had any doubts about your identity being Chuck Cunningham, NRA Director of Federal Affairs, you've pretty much dispelled them. Or perhaps you are just a nobody who spends late nights researching EXACTLY how much GOA's FEC reports indicate they spend.

    Thanks too for so clearly elucidating the difference between PRINCIPLES and CLOUT. Sadly, nobody disputes the NRA's clout; it is your principles that are in question.

    Now, imagine if both were to align?

    Paul Valone

  • Truth and Freedom 3 years ago

    You should just go back to deleting posted comments that expose you as a fraud and censor.

  • Truth and Freedom 3 years ago

    P.S. Obviously only someone at NRA headquarters could access such public records online. You must think that pro-gun activists are lazy or stupid. Since GOA spent so little to support its endorsed candidates in the 2010 elections, it took little time and effort to find these meager amounts.

  • Ken Soderstrom 3 years ago

    Chuck,

    Here’s the GOA website where your issues with them are more-appropriately addressed (I hope you appreciate all the help I’ve provided you over the last few days): http://gunowners.org.

    Regarding “support for”, “not-opposing”, “contributing financially”, “giving aid and comfort to…”: NRA has done all of these things for Harry “Glad I Confirmed Sotomayor and Kagan” Reid – it’s all the same to real gun-owning Americans, Chuck. NRA quacked like the Reid-supporting duck it truly is: It’s history now, Chuck. You can spin, and double-talk, and back-track and try to justify, but you’ll never change the facts.

    Regarding NRA’s flip-flop on DISCLOSE: Yes, NRA DID oppose it…that is, until Reid and Shuler cut you a deal for immunity. Then you hung the rest of us out to dry.

    “Quack” again, Chuck.

  • Truth and Freedom 3 years ago

    Quack again on your part. You just ignore answering questions, twist facts and simply repeat yourself.

  • Ken Soderstrom 3 years ago

    OK, I see that you need more assistance, Chuck (how did such a needy person bumble themselves into an executive position at NRA – maybe it’s prerequisite)?

    You’re entirely correct that issues related to NRA’s support of Reid/Shuler/Holliman have been “twisted.” If they hadn’t been these ill-advised endorsements wouldn’t have been made in the first place.

    What Paul has been doing, and I’ve been trying to support him, is to UNTWIST what NRA has done in these races. We want REAL PRO-SECOND AMENDMENT REPRESENTATIVES for North Carolina gun owners.

    I’m not sure what NRA wants. It appears to be six- and seven-figure salaries for it’s executives, but I’m not sure, that’s just the way it looks to gun owners in our State.

  • Profile picture of Paul Valone
    Paul Valone 3 years ago

    Well we can all congratulate Chuck and his buds in Fairfax: Thanks in part to them, Kissell, McIntyre and Shuler all get to subvert our rights for at least the next 2 years. Given that the margins were larger than the NRA could have mailed, it brings up another factor one of our board members mentioned but which I failed to do in previous articles: NRA endorses likely winners in order to inflate its "win" ration and -- everybody ready now? -- bring in more money.

    Enjoy your $625K, Chuck. It is at our expense.

    Paul Valone

  • sidwasout 3 years ago

    So, Paul gets his hat handed to him and he starts making excuses. What happened to all the bluster about your secret campaign that NRA was not going to like? You lost. Be a man about it and admit you have less clout than you think. Or, just keep dredging up ancient history to bolster your anti-NRA agenda.

    Maybe you can actually help the cause by apologizing to Shuler for mislabeling him as anti-gun. Again, be a man about it, admit your error, then work with a legislator who supports the Second Amendment.

  • Ken Soderstrom 3 years ago

    Well, it looks like "Shut 'em Up" Shuler will have a couple more years to find an opportunity to take a real stand on gun rights. Hopefully he'll do better with the Second than he's done with the First. And also hopefully NRA will join GRNC in holding his feet to the fire if he doesn't.

    At least "Hoplophobe Castle Doctrine Killer" Holliman has been retired. I hope NRA will apologize to Rayne Brown for their lack of appropriate support.

  • Truth and Freedom 3 years ago

    And, of course, these actions qualify as taking a real stand on gun rights:

    VOTED this year for the Protecting Gun Owners in Bankruptcy Act (H.R. 5827 in the 111th Congress), which would ensure that a person who filed for bankruptcy would not lose their firearms, thereby maintaining the fundamental right to self-defense.

    VOTED last year for (the Senate amendment to H.R. 627) allowing carry license or permit holders to carry and transport firearms for self-defense in national parks and wildlife refuges.

    VOTED (for the Altmire amendment to H.R. 2016) in 2008 to protect hunting, fishing, trapping and recreational shooting on public land under the control of the Bureau of Land Management.

    Cosponsored the Second Amendment Enforcement Act (H.R. 5162 in the 111th Congress and H.R. 6691 in the 110th Congress) and District of Columbia Personal Protection Act (H.R. 1399 in the 110th Congress) that would repeal the D.C. gun ban/registration statute and restore the right of self-defense to law-abiding residents of our nation’s capital – also VOTED for the Childers amendment to H.R. 6842 in the 110th Congress to accomplish this.

  • Keith Shulers 3 years ago

    Paul-
    Thanks for your help!
    Keith

  • Rusty Shackleford 3 years ago

    Paul Valone=Epic Fail

  • Pickett's Charge 3 years ago

    Hey Valone-
    Looks like you got your ass kicked tonight.

    Your false charges and sloppy research caught up with you!

  • Truth and Freedom 3 years ago

    Pro-gun Congressmen Heath Shuler and Larry Kissell won reelection yesterday. Also Renee Ellmers defeated anti-gun incumbent Congressman Bob Etheridge in NC-2.

    For some unknown reason, B. J, Lawson in NC-4 was the only congressional candidate that Gun Owners of America endorsed in North Carolina.

    Can someone explain why GOA endorsed only 64 U.S. House candidates and did not endorse the pro-gun Republican candidate opposing the anti-gun Democrat in the competitive Senate races in Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

    Also, there is a huge difference between endorsing candidates and supporting candidates. The NRA Political Victory Fund is reported to be spending $20 million in this election cycle (www.dailycaller.com/2010/11/01/thedc-exclusive-nra-spends-20-million-thi...). According to reports to the Federal Election Commission, GOA spent very little to support their few endorsed candidates. Their largest PAC expenditure was for their accountant (over $15,000) and that amount is more than one-third of their total 2010 expenditures to date). As of October 13, GOA spent $3,559 for its endorsed Senate candidates and $2,877 for its endorsed House candidates. Over $20 million spent by the NRA and less than $10,000 by GOA – who is doing more to protect your Second Amendment rights in the 2010 election cycle?

  • Ken Soderstrom 3 years ago

    No, Chuck, despite your repeated posting of the same inflated NRA assessment, we’ll just have to wait and see where Shuler comes down on the Second. Hopefully it’ll be better than where he’s come down on the First.

    At least NRA’s pal “Hoplophobe Castle Doctrine Killer” Holliman is gone, and we have a real pro-freedom law maker in his place with Rayne Brown. It looks like North Carolinians now have an excellent chance at passing a Castle Doctrine bill now, despite NRA’s interference.

    Why don’t you get to work on something worthwhile now, Chuck, and figure-out how to get well-managed shooting ranges built on federal land? This is something that gun owners in NC would benefit from.

  • Profile picture of Paul Valone
    Paul Valone 3 years ago

    We got our ass kicked? Maybe you are looking at election returns from a parallel universe. Because the ones I see reflect that anti-gun Democrats endorsed by the NRA across North Carolina were defeated by GRNC-recommended challengers. We could start with Hugh Holliman's defeat by Rayne Brown, and then move on to victories by LaRoque, Murry, Sanderson, and others. Of the 15 NCGA districts mailed by GRNC-PVF, the only one I am aware of losing *at this time* is Henion. Don't worry: We will be compiling a list for publication very soon indeed.

    As for Shuler, he won by 20,000 votes -- way more than the NRA could have generated. But as I just wrote today, don't worry: By endorsing likely winners, you make everybody think you are effective. Hell, you should have endorsed Etheridge too; then you might have had a clean sweep of anti-gun Dems.

    What was demonstrated yesterday is that GRNC can now beat the NRA in state house and senate districts. We reach more people, and have greater credibility. So sorry for you (not).

    Paul Valone

  • Rusty Shackleford 3 years ago

    Sorry Valone-NRA was the only pro-gun group to endorse and provide support to Renee Ellmers who beat anti-gun Etheridge.

    NRA did provide the margin of victory for Heath Shuler based on the number of NRA members in that district.

    You were MIA again.

  • Profile picture of Paul Valone
    Paul Valone 3 years ago

    Actually, the lie is yours, Rusty. According to my copy of "American Rifleman," NOBODY got an endorsement in the 2nd Congressional District. Ellmers got "AQ" and Etheridge got an over-rated "D."

    You seem to have knowledge of the NRA of NRA members in a given district, so I'm guessing you too are on the Fairfax payroll, but you're almost certainly lying again. I doubt the NRA has 20,000 members in the state, much less in the 11th Congressional district. Last known membership numbers for the state (admittedly a number of years ago) were slightly in excess of 10,000, so tell us another.

    Oh, yes: You conveniently neglect to mention all those state races in which GRNC-recommended candidates kicked ass over NRA-endorsed candidates. Of 15 districts mailed, we lost 4 (and that includes Shuler; we did not mail Kissell). Pretty good results, if you ask me. We are now doing a full analysis of the 118 candidates recommended by GRNC-PVF, the number of wins, and similar data for NRA endorsed candidates. I wager you won't like the result.

    On a final note, I have spoken with several members of the party which will now control both chambers of the General Assembly, and they are very appreciative of GRNC's efforts. When Anthony Roullette slinks into Raleigh on or about January 26, I bet I get a lot better reception than he does.

    TTFN

    Paul Valone

  • Rusty Shackleford 3 years ago

    Valone you spewed:

    " NOBODY got an endorsement in the 2nd Congressional District. Ellmers got "AQ" and Etheridge got an over-rated "D."

    More sloppy research or just another lie?

    Vote Freedom First - Vote RENEE ELLMERS for CONGRESS

    The NRA-PVF (www.NRAPVF.org) has endorsed Renee Ellmers for Congress. It is critical that you vote for Renee Ellmers for Congress, and urge your family and friends to do the same. We need to bolster our ranks in Congress to keep this White House from pursuing an anti-gun agenda after the 2010 elections.

    That’s why it’s more important than ever that we elect Renee Ellmers to Congress to help build a pro-gun firewall around our Second Amendment rights. Renee Ellmers has been endorsed by the NRA-PVF for her responses to our federal candidate questionnaire and is committed to oppose federal gun control schemes and support pro-gun reforms.

    By contrast, her opponent – Congressman Bob Etheridge – has earned a “D” rating for his anti-gun record in Congress. He has voted to regulate gun shows out of business. Etheridge refused to sign the pro-gun “friend of the court” brief in the landmark Hellerand McDonald Second Amendment cases and voted against repealing the gun ban in our nation’s capital. Etheridge also voted against current federal laws preventing attempts to bankrupt the American gun industry through bogus lawsuits and allowing commercial airline pilots to be armed in the cockpit. Finally Etheridge refused to answer our federal candidate questionnaire – a clear indication of indifference if not outright hostility, to the rights of gun owners and sportsmen.

    The choice is clear! All gun owners and sportsmen in North Carolina’s second congressional district should support Renee Ellmers on Election Day. If you can volunteer to help, please contact her campaign at www.ReneeForCongress.com and 252-220-0181. Also spread the word to your family, friends, and fellow gun owners. And on November 2, Vote Freedom First – Vote Renee Ellmers for Congress!”

  • Truth and Freedom 3 years ago

    Why did you not mail against Larry Kissell since he is supposedly anti-gun and was in a competitive race for reelection to Congress? No need to try to justify your false claim that "Kissell has exactly zero gun votes under his belt" since he voted for the amendment (enacted into law) allowing carrying and transportation of firearms in national parks and wildlife refuges.

  • Profile picture of Paul Valone
    Paul Valone 3 years ago

    Ah, good. they got one right: They upgraded her after the magazine and did a mailing into the district. Bravo!

    Now, about those other 118 races...

  • Profile picture of Paul Valone
    Paul Valone 3 years ago

    Ah, good. they got one right: They upgraded her after the magazine and did a mailing into the district. Bravo!

    Now, about those other 118 races...

  • Profile picture of Paul Valone
    Paul Valone 3 years ago

    Ah, good. they got one right: They upgraded her after the magazine and did a mailing into the district. Bravo!

    Now, about those other 118 races...

  • Rusty Shackleford 3 years ago

    Still waiting for your answer on this Valone:

    For some unknown reason, B. J, Lawson in NC-4 was the only congressional candidate that Gun Owners of America endorsed in North Carolina.

    Can someone explain why GOA endorsed only 64 U.S. House candidates and did not endorse the pro-gun Republican candidate opposing the anti-gun Democrat in the competitive Senate races in Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

  • Rusty Shackleford 3 years ago

    Jeff Rau-Posted:

    "To post all the gritty details would take extensive work."

    Jeff- funny if you go to the NRA-PVF website they have posted the voting records and pro-gun bills sponsored-I guess we just have to rely on Valones sloppy research and dart board.

  • Rusty Shackleford 3 years ago

    Shuler Threatens to Challenge Pelosi for Minority Leader
    • By Kathleen Hunter
    • Roll Call Staff
    • Rep. Heath Shuler predicted Thursday that Speaker Nancy Pelosi would act in the “best interest” of the Democratic Caucus and bow out of leadership, but said he would challenge the California Democrat for Minority Leader if she tried to stay on and no “viable alternative” candidate emerged.

  • Profile picture of Paul Valone
    Paul Valone 3 years ago

    To all who read this comment section: Read carefully, because it is likely you are reading the comments of high-level NRA officers. Read carefully the sophomoric content, the intellectual dishonesty, and the questions asked and repeatedly answered.

    But read most carefully the questions they avoid answering: Not only the anti-gun actions of the congressmen the NRA endorsed, but the fact that in state-level races, the NRA did not better than -- probably quite a bit worse than -- GRNC.

    Instead, they continue asking about what GOA did which, or course, I can't answer since I don't speak for GOA.

    Actually, "Rusty," I was wrong: GRNC didn't make recomendations in 118 races: It was 135. NRA had the cajones to make endorsements in less than half of that.

    Keep talking, boys from NRA HQ: You continue to tell people who you really are.

    FPV

  • Rusty Shackleford 3 years ago

    Valone you spewed:

    "GRNC didn't make recomendations in 118 races: It was 135"

    So Valone-did you endorse in all these races? Did you mail in these elections asking for the election or defeat of a candidate?

  • Rusty Shackleford 3 years ago

    So Valone-
    Looks like you nor GOA endorsed Renee Ellmers over anti-gun Congressman Bob "who are you" Etheridge.
    Please show everyone your non-mailing or were you MIA again?

    Please tell everyone why you only endorsed one candidate for Congress from NC-BJ Lawson who lost?

  • tim sims 3 years ago

    Mr Valone,

    I'm a North Carolina gun owner interested in protecting my rights. I do not believe that NRA is perfect, but after revieving their grades and reasons for endorsements(based on votes) they are heads and tails above your local group.

    You seem to be on a hate the NRA campaign rather that shooting at the gun grabbers like Shumer.
    Your grading sheet will now go into the trash next to our local anti-gun rag.

  • Ken Soderstrom 3 years ago

    Tim, NRA supported Heath Shuler who was largely responsible for the DISCLOSE act. DISCLOSE was an end-around on a Supreme Court decision earlier this year that supported First Amendment rights. NRA cut a deal with Shuler to be excluded from DISCLOSE which is probably why they endorsed him. His voting record is smoke and mirrors: easy votes spun to look supportive of the Second. There are no 'tough' votes there.

    In addition to supporting Shuler, despite his selling-out of the First Amendment, NRA also endorsed several clearly anti-gun candidates in State races. Notably among them was Hugh Holliman who killed the Castle Doctrine bill that NC gun owners desperately need. Thankfully, (and due largely to GRNC efforts, and despite NRA's misguided endorsement) Holliman was defeated by clearly pro-gun Rayne Brown.

    NRA has become more concerned about its own status and power, and less concerned with its mission: the interests of it's membership. It has been an excellent organization in the (distant) past and still does some good things. But it appears now that they may be attempting to manage some level of infringement on the Second to justify their existence - and fat-cat salaries. Do you realize the Wayne LaPierre is paid 1.2 MILLION per year?

    No one wants to be anti-NRA, Tim. We just want NRA to do what they should.

    GRNC is more knowledgable than NRA regarding state issues. This apparently threatens NRA, and they're acting badly (go back and read their collective comments to Paul's articles: it's all irrelevant, pre-spun talking points, and rude personal attacks). NRA has become an uncivilized, paranoid bully. They're fine when everything goes their way, and nobody challenges them on poor decision-making. If they were really interested in pro-2A, they'd appreciate constructive crticism, and try to work with the locals: GRNC.

    So Tim, think through things before you round-file GRNC. But even if you do decide to throw GRNC material out, we'll still be working hard to support your right to keep and bear arms in NC, whether NRA helps or not.

  • Profile picture of Paul Valone
    Paul Valone 3 years ago

    Rusty:

    Where do you get this stuff? Only one other congressional candidate recommended *we do not "endorse") by GRNC? You must be nuts or more ignorant than I thought.

    From GRNC-PVF alert 10-14-10:

    US HOUSE:
    District 2-ELLMERS; 3-JONES; 4-LAWSON; 5-FOXX; 6-COBLE; 7-PANTANO;
    8-JOHNSON; 9-MYRICK; 10-McHENRY; 11-MILLER; 13-RANDALL

    Oh, I get it: You're still trying to distract from the issue at hand: That in state races, NRA-endorsed anti-gun incumbents were often beaten by GRNC by pro-gun GRNC-recommended challengers.

    FPV

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