For many years, the gun ban lobby has portrayed the National Rifle Association as the big money bully in the gun control debate, but stories published today and yesterday suggest that the real big spender is anti-gun New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who has dumped a wad of cash into thwarting a Colorado recall election in defense of two Democrats who could get the boot for backing that state’s new gun control laws.
Bloomberg may not have spent any money in Washington State so far to help determine the future of a 15-page gun control initiative, but that battle really doesn’t begin until 2014,when the measure could appear on the ballot.
Colorado right now is higher on Bloomberg’s spending priority list, because if voters in two districts kick out Senators Angela Giron of Pueblo and John Morse of Colorado Springs. An Op-Ed in today’s National Review Online contends both should be recalled.
While Democrats would still hold a slight majority in the Colorado Legislature if both senators are taken down, their recall would send a signal not just to Denver but to other state capitols that Bloomberg and other anti-gunners do not want delivered. Bluntly, it would put gun prohibitionists on notice that they might face a similar problem for voting against the constitutionally-protected civil rights of their constituents.
As the late Congressman Thomas P. “Tip” O’Neill, who served as Speaker of the House, once observed, “All politics is local.” Another former congressman who also served as House Speaker, Tom Foley, could attest to that. In the political bloodbath of November 1994, he was tossed out of office by his Fifth District Eastern Washington constituents for voting the wrong way on guns during the first Clinton administration, though today some political historians try to ignore that and insist Foley became a victim of his fight against term limits.
Eastern Washington is “gun country” and so is Colorado outside of Denver and a few other urban would-be Utopias. In both states, they know how to "term limit" people.
Today’s reports say Bloomberg has spent $350,000 against an estimated $100,000 put up by the NRA in the Colorado battle. If anything, the NRA money is going towards the good cause of allowing the electorate to throw someone out of office for not representing their interests. KUNC in Greeley reports that Democrat Gov. John Hickenlooper has argued that the recall efforts are “hurting Democracy.”
He has also lamented that the recall supporters are “trying to intimidate and punish lawmakers who took a bold stance to protect public safety,” the radio station explained.
Recall efforts, as clarified by the National Review’s opinion piece, are part of democracy, whether anti-gunners like it or not, and perhaps Hickenlooper has a point about punishing lawmakers. Gun rights activists might be candid enough to acknowledge that he is spot-on. Giron and Morse voted against a large bloc of their constituents, and against their rights. Just how else do Centennial State gun owners send lawmakers a message with teeth?
Bloomberg has been throwing his money at gun control efforts all over the country, but an affirmative vote to eject Giron and Morse will send another message: Bloomberg’s money can’t buy off angry voters. Besides, Bloomberg votes in New York, not Colorado.
Fatal hunting accidents are not unheard of, but there appears to be something more to the shooting death yesterday of a grouse hunter several miles east of Orobille, near the community of Chesaw. According to published reports, the unidentified hunter and a partner were looking for grouse when they spotted one. The victim got out of the truck to take a shot, but was instead fatally shot.
The incident occurred along the Cow Camp Road on Pontiac Ridge, and the victim was a Western Washington resident, according to the Seattle Times account.
Hunting is actually much safer than many other activities, thanks largely to hunter education programs that date back to the first launch of a “hunter safety” course conducted by the NRA in 1949 in New York State.
If yesterday’s shooting was no accident, all the hunter education in the world would not have prevented that.