The NRA Buys Your Politicians One Dead Child At A Time
The NRA has been one of the most consistently influential political lobbies in American politics for the past 30 years, since it first endorsed Ronald Reagan as a presidential candidate. More recently, it spent an $7.2 million during the 2010 elections on so-called private expenditures, messages that advocated or opposed certain political candidates. They even got Chuck Norris to star in an ad for their “Trigger The Vote” campaign, imploring potential voters to register.
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Much of the NRA’s power, however, seems to lie less in its spending and more in its ability to mobilize its members, who are 4 million strong and well-versed in grassroots campaigning. Gun rights are a polarizing issue in America, and can make or break politicians and legislation. Al Gore, for example, lost the 2000 election in his own home state of Tennessee, primarily because of his pro gun-control stance. Even now, fear of reprisals from the NRA is holding up a bill from the Bureau on Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives that would stem gun-trafficking to Mexico, in the hopes of alleviating thecurrent drug war.
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