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This LTE fails miserably in tying Stewart Mills and the NRA to the Ebola outbreak. Here’s the heart of its attempt:

A year ago Stewart Mills signaled his candidacy with an open video “letter” to Rep. Rick Nolan. It promoted the need and right to own an assault rifle as a constitutional symbol of American freedom. Now with the Ebola outbreak, this NRA and its wider coalition doctrine is pitted even more squarely against government involvement in health, both at the preventive and care level.

We don’t have a surgeon general because the NRA effectively blocked his confirmation. The American Medical Association and NRA have been feuding for years over such things as the NRA’s opposition to a physician’s right to ask patients about guns, its killing of a CDC study on gun deaths, and medical consensus that our 30,000 annual gun deaths should be treated as a public health problem. This partisan austerity anti-government stance has cut in funding of the NIH and CDC such that the NIH director recently noted that we otherwise should have had an Ebola vaccine by now.

That’s breathtakingly ill-informed. That’s a stretch of Olympic proportions.

It’s the latest attempt by the gun control crowd to tie Ebola to constitutional conservatism. First, progressives said that the Ebola crisis was the result of Republican budget cuts to the CDC. Now they’re saying that it’s conservatives’ fault because the NRA rejected President Obama’s surgeon general nominee.

It’s long past time to mercilessly ridicule this type of thinking.

Saying that gun deaths are a “public health problem” is insanity. The vast majority of gun deaths are caused by criminal activity. How will doctors treat that? Say ‘take 2 short clips and call me in the morning’?

Next, saying that Stewart Mills’ video to Rick Nolan “promoted the need and right to own an assault rifle” is breathtakingly dishonest. The video that Mills put together that went viral showed how little difference there is between an assault rifle and other firearms. This buffoon’s attempt to frighten people into thinking that Stewart Mills is obsessed with putting automatic weapons in everyone’s hands is laughable.

Ebola exposes how attempts to use market-forces alone in health care have again failed the U.S.

The man that wrote this LTE just identified himself as Nolan’s base: pro-gun control and pro-socialized medicine.

That puts to rest the argument of who would accurately represent Minnesota’s Eighth District and who would represent Nancy Pelosi.

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Rick Nolan’s statements on the Second Amendment have hinted that he doesn’t understand the Second Amendment. The NRA’s ad buy will set the record straight on who’s the pro-Second Amendment candidate in this race is. This statement is frightening:

“There have always been restrictions on the Second Amendment,” Nolan previously told the Associated Press. “You can only have six shells in your shotgun when you’re shooting ducks. Why should you be able to have 100 in your rifle when you’re shooting people?”

It’s frightening to think Congressman Nolan doesn’t know federal law on shotgun capacity for waterfowl. That isn’t even Second Amendment 101.

That’s before getting into the part about the Second Amendment wasn’t created to give people the right to hunt. That was just a given considering the fact that urbanization of our nation was a century+ away. The Second Amendment was created to give citizens the right to defend themselves against tyrannical government and so people could protect their families.

How can someone say that they’re pro-Second Amendment when they don’t know what inspired the Founding Fathers to write it?

Nolan has defended his support of an assault weapons ban, limits on magazine capacity and other proposals as common-sense regulation that don’t conflict with the hunting-friendly lifestyle of the 8th District.

The only difference between so-called assault weapons and other semi-automatic weapons is cosmetic. When the original assault weapons ban was passed, it was obsolete within 6 months. Passing another assault weapons ban would be unconstitutional because it would outlaw an entire type of firearm.

That isn’t common sense. That’s stupidity on display.

Baker cited those votes and others in Nolan’s “F” grade with the NRA. The NRA announced its endorsement of Mills this week. Baker called Mills “the only person in the race who is committed to protecting our Second Amendment rights.”

Rick Nolan is pro-Second Amendment except when he’s pro-gun control. It’s that simple.

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This article in the National Journal examines why Gov. John Hickenlooper, (D-CO), is in political trouble. The article is 4,654 words long, which is more than a little excessive. They could’ve skipped the first 3,073 words. They should’ve started with this:

Still, no single issue altered Hickenlooper’s fortunes more than gun control. He grew up in a gun-loving family—he often tells a story about accidentally shooting himself in the shoe as a kid—and in the days after the 2012 movie-theater massacre in Aurora, the governor told reporters he was skeptical that any regulation could have stopped the killer. But by the following winter, Hickenlooper had changed his mind. He settled on universal background checks as his top priority. He was convinced, he says, by the evidence that they worked. Plus, as he told the sheriffs in June, it struck him as the most likely measure to achieve consensus. “After the shootings in Aurora, as I went around the state,” he said, “I kept hearing Republicans, Democrats, everyone, saying, you know, we should not take guns away from anyone, but keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people. I didn’t think—this is how bright I am—I didn’t think it was going to be that controversial.”

After championing background checks, Hickenlooper signaled he would not support the many other gun reforms that Democratic lawmakers were floating. When he learned that 30 to 40 percent of fatal shootings of police officers involved high-capacity magazines, however, he got behind a bill to limit them. Gun-rights supporters were so incensed that they recalled two Democratic state senators and forced the resignation of a third. “There was a feeling in urban areas that magazines were associated with Aurora,” says Christine Scanlan, Hickenlooper’s director of legislative affairs at the time. But rural voters, by contrast, associated magazines with hunting. “The governor thought he could reconcile those two views,” Scanlan says, “but it didn’t happen that way.”

More than anything else, Gov. Hickenlooper’s signing of gun control legislation is what’s got him in political hot water. Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob Beauprez is capitalizing:

THE GOVERNOR OF COLORADO—or, rather, an actor who bears some resemblance to him from behind—sits in a director’s chair, back to the camera, as two women comb his hair and apply makeup. “John Hickenlooper loves making campaign ads, but he despises making tough decisions,” the voice-over intones. “Being funny on TV is nice, but unfortunately for Hick, governing is serious business.” Released in September, this is the first Republican Governors Association ad of the season in Colorado. On screen, the faux Hick hands a stein of beer to a lackey. “It’s time for a leader,” the spot concludes. “It’s time for Bob Beauprez.”

Beauprez has built his surprisingly strong bid around the growing perception that Hickenlooper is wishy-washy and weak. “A successful campaign against Hickenlooper is, ‘This guy is a good guy, but he’s kind of a joke, and the challenges we face in this state are not a joke,’ ” says Republican operative and former state legislator Josh Penry. Sure enough, Republicans are working this fall to take all the items in the governor’s “pro” column—his agile centrism, his genial frankness, even his beer—and turn them into “cons.”

Simply put, this race is too close to call. It’s trending towards Hickenlooper in the sense that 3 of the 4 latest polls have Hickenlooper leading.

The bad news for Gov. Hickenlooper is that his lead in each of those 3 polls is thin, with 4 points being his biggest lead. People don’t like the Hickenlooper gun grab laws. Policies matter. This time, Gov. Hickenlooper chose partisanship over doing what’s right. That led to this uncomfortable exchange:

“You made a comment about, sometimes to get somebody who disagrees with you to come over to your side, you just have to sit there and listen more, and you find that’s a way to get them to turn to your side,” said Sheriff John Cooke of conservative Weld County, referring to one of the governor’s favorite talking points. “My question is, though, when these gun laws came up, why wouldn’t you listen to the sheriffs? Why wouldn’t, when a couple of sheriffs wanted to meet with you, you wouldn’t listen to them and hear our side of the story?”

Your average politician would have had a well-rehearsed answer to that question; after all, signing the gun-control legislation 15 months earlier had been the most politically unpopular move of Hickenlooper’s career. But Hickenlooper’s stock-in-trade has always been that he’s not your average politician—nothing of the kind—and so, characteristically, he winged it. “You know, I would say in, in the gun stuff that we, uh, certainly could’ve done a better job,” he began, one hand jammed deep into his pocket as he gesticulated limply with the other. “And this is—I’m not defending this—there’s no—I didn’t find out that the sheriffs were trying to talk to me until a week afterwards—10 days afterwards. By that time, all the—whatever was gonna hit the fan had hit it.” He scratched the back of his head. “I think we screwed that up completely, and I think we did a disservice to you and a disservice to ourselves.”

That’s what a politician sounds like when he’s been caught with his hands in the proverbial political cookie jar. That’s why he deserves to lose.

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Two weeks ago, Everytown for Gun Safety, Michael Bloomberg’s gun-grabbing political operation, endorsed Gov. Dayton. This morning, the Mesabi Daily News ‘awarded’ Gov. Dayton a basket of onions:

Onions: To the Mark Dayton campaign for accepting the support of anti-gun former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s anti-gun group. Dayton will try to portray himself as pro-gun, but if he was, Bloomberg’s anti-gun group would not be endorsing him. Also, Onions to the DFLers and union bosses who will poo-poo the NRA as a Republican group when, in fact, it is not. More Onions to DFLers who complain about Stewart Mills being a millionaire when Dayton inherited multi-millions from his family and receives payments from his trust fund administered in South Dakota. If you are telling people to not vote for Mills because he is a millionaire (and pro-gun), then you should also not vote for Dayton because he is a multi-millionaire (and anti-gun).

There’s no question that Gov. Dayton will attempt to portray himself as pro-gun. That’s what he did in 2010. That doesn’t mean he’s pro-Second Amendment. It just means he’s a skilled politician who knows he can’t be seen as hostile to guns in Minnesota.

As the writer said, though, Bloomberg’s organization wouldn’t endorse Gov. Dayton if Dayton was pro-Second Amendment. The writer is right in saying that the NRA isn’t a Republican-only organization. Because it isn’t, it’s the strong organization that it is. It’s the type of organization that Everytown for Gun Safety and Moms Demand Answers wish they could be. In reality, they aren’t close.

The Everytown for Gun Safety endorsement might hurt other Democrats, too. These DFL incumbents will have targets on their backs:

HD 42A Barb Yarusso
HD 48A Yvonne Selcer
HD 49A Ron Erhardt
HD 49B Paul Rosenthal
HD 51B Laurie Halverson
HD 56B Will Morgan

It’ll be interesting to see if these candidate get defeated the first Tuesday in November.

If the DFL had the slightest bit of integrity, they’d run Ron Erhardt out of their party. They won’t do that because they don’t have any integrity. This photo (H/T Mitch Berg) shows how demented some DFL legislators are:

Ron Erhardt isn’t a nobody. He chairs the House Transportation Policy Committee. When the chair of a committee threatens to blow an activist’s head off, it’s proof that he’s either violent or naturally mean-spirited. In this instance, it’s likely both. Mitch poses a perfectly legitimate question:

I’m trying to imagine what’d happen if a pro-life Representative had said that to a volunteer from Emily’s List? If a fundamentalist Christian rep had said something like that to a gay marriage advocate?

I won’t pretend that Republicans are pure as the driven snow. I know that isn’t the truth. I don’t have to pretend, though, that the Twin Cities media have a history of downplaying things when Democrats do outrageous things.

Ron Erhardt is one of the most mean-spirited politicians ever elected to the Minnesota legislature. He’s a despicable person. If the DFL supports him, that’s proof that they’re willing to overlook that type of mean-spirited statement to win an election.

I hope that the GOCRA volunteer who was threatened files charges against Rep. Erhardt.

The Twin Cities media is on trial, too, though not to the same extent that Rep. Erhardt is. If they don’t vigorously report on this disgusting incident, that will be an indictment against them, too. When a high-ranking public official threatens a person, that’s a major story.

That isn’t hardball politics. That isn’t passionately debating an issue. That’s a high-ranking politician threatening someone’s life. I’d ask Twin Cities political reporters if they’ve ever heard about a high-ranking politician threatening someone. I’m betting they haven’t.

That’s a good hint that this story is newsworthy.

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Some governors are expressing surprise and outrage after gun manufacturers left their state:

Beretta USA announced last week that it will relocate from Maryland to Tennessee, explaining that stringent gun laws supported by Democratic Gov. Martin O’Malley would make it nearly impossible for the company to manufacture or sell many of its products in the Old Line State.

“During the legislative session in Maryland that resulted in passage of the Firearm Safety Act of 2013, the version of the statute that passed the Maryland Senate would have prohibited Beretta USA from being able to manufacture, store or even import into the state products that we sell to customers throughout the United States and around the world,” Jeff Cooper, general manager for Beretta USA, said in a statement.

Lefty Gov. Martin O’Malley is sticking to his guns:

And although Beretta has no plans to move its administrative staff in Accokeek, Md., to Tennessee, O’Malley is apparently unhappy with the company’s decision to move much of its business to Tennessee.

“We’re disappointed with this decision, but the common-sense gun safety law we passed, which includes licenses for handgun purchases, is keeping schools, communities and law enforcement personnel safe,” said a spokeswoman for O’Malley, Nina Smith.

Here’s a question for Ms. Smith. If the bill just passed, how does Gov. O’Malley know that it’s keeping anyone safe? Have crime rates dropped? If they haven’t, then the claim is essentially spin. If they have, how do you know it isn’t attributable to other things?

Meanwhile, another southern governor is happy:

Beretta will reportedly invest around $45 million to set up shop in Tennessee, Fox News reported, and plans to employ about 300 people during the next five years.

“Beretta is one of the world’s great companies, and its commitment to excellence and Tennessee’s rich history in manufacturing make a great match,” Dave Smith, a spokesman for Tennessee’s Republican Gov. Bill Haslam, told Fox in an email.

Here’s another situation where capital goes where it’s welcome. Maryland essentially said that Beretta wasn’t welcome in the state. Tennesssee stepped forward and said that they’d extend some southern hospitality to Beretta. This isn’t that complicated. It’s pretty straightforward, in fact.

Here’s a list of gun manufacturers who’ve left states after those states passed strict gun control laws:

Beretta USA
Colt Competition
Kahr Arms
Les Baer Custom
Lewis Machine & Tool
Magpul Industries
O.F. Mossberg & Sons
PTR Industries
Remington Arms
Stag Arms
Sturm, Ruger & Co.

States that aren’t hospitable to gun companies are finding out that they’re essentially shooting themselves in the foot. Will they ever learn?

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This afternoon, I got this email from the Sivarajah for Congress campaign:

Friends,

I am honored to have received an AQ rating from the National Rifle Association. An AQ rating as explained on the NRA website means the following:

“A pro-gun candidate whose rating is based solely on the candidate’s responses to the NRA-PVF Candidate Questionnaire and who does not have a voting record on Second Amendment issues.”

I look forward to the opportunity to prove my commitment to our 2nd Amendment rights with my vote in the United States Congress.

The highest grade a candidate can receive from the NRA is an A+. It will be my personal goal to be “a legislator with not only an excellent voting record on all critical NRA issues, but who has also made a vigorous effort to promote and defend the Second Amendment.”

My message to Ms. Sivarajah is simple. Talk is cheap. Anyone can fill in the right answers on a questionnaire. Here’s what matters:

U.S. House of Representatives District 6 Republican Primary

Tom Emmer (R) Grade: A
Status: Candidate

Rhonda Sivarajah (R) Grade: AQ
Status: Candidate

It’s nice that Ms. Sivarajah got a nice grade but the NRA endorsed Tom Emmer. Here’s what the grades mean:

A: Solidly pro-gun candidate. A candidate who has supported NRA positions on key votes in elective office or a candidate with a demonstrated record of support on Second Amendment issues.

AQ A pro-gun candidate whose rating is based solely on the candidate’s responses to the NRA-PVF Candidate Questionnaire and who does not have a voting record on Second Amendment issues.

In the Sixth District, we insist that our candidates walk the walk on the Second Amendment. Just talking the talk isn’t good enough. Tom Emmer’s consistently walked the walk. Thus far, Rhonda Sivarajah has only talked the talk.

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The Metrocrat wing of the DFL is the dominant wing of the party at the moment. Typically, Metrocrats love gun control and hate mining. Consider this post my argument that Rick Nolan’s views align best with the Metrocrats, not with the Iron Range. This website exposes Rick Nolan as the anti-Second Amendment activist that he is. Check this out:

Rick Nolan On the Record

The NRA is “very toxic in the effect they’re having on the American public.” Rick Nolan, MSNBC, 2013
“…I am concerned over the easy accessibility of small handguns… I will vote to prohibit the sale or manufacture of such weapons.” Rick Nolan, Constituent Letter, 1977
“I think we should outlaw assault rifles.” Rick Nolan, DFL Primary Debate, 2012
“I don’t need an assault weapon to shoot a duck, and I think they ought to be banned…” Rick Nolan, Face the Nation, 2013
“…I think we need to put a ban on the amount of shells you can carry in a magazine.” Rick Nolan, Face the Nation, 2013

I transcribed Stuart Mills ad (titled 2nd Amemdment) for this article. Here’s the key part of that ad:

Around election time, Rick will put on his hunter’s orange and grab a rifle but in Washington, he’s repeatedly voted to take away your rights.

Rick Nolan’s views on guns are compatible with Michael Paymar’s or Dianne Feinstein’s. They aren’t a fit with Eighth District voters. This video shows Nolan’s true colors:

That’s pretty emphatic. Nolan isn’t in step with his pro-Second Amendment district. Based on this information from the Nolan for Congress Issues page, Nolan’s anti-mining views don’t fit with his district, either:

The Environment

The environment, our air, lakes, rivers and forests, are crucial to our 8th district economy. The degradation of our air and water, along with global warming, threaten the very survival of our species here on mother earth. We must protect the environment in order to preserve our way of life and our tourism industry.

In environmental activists’ minds, there’s only one way to degrade a the “air and water” in a lightly populated area like the Range. That’s through mining. Apparently, Nolan’s views on mining are more compatible with Al Franken’s views than with Tommie Rukavina’s view.

Based on how little he agrees with the Eighth District, it isn’t difficult seeing him in the fight of his political life. I wouldn’t be surprised if Mills defeats Nolan this November.

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In special recall elections yesterday, Coloradans swept 2 Democrats out of office for supporting restrictive gun control laws:

Two Democratic lawmakers in Colorado, including the president of the state Senate, were recalled Tuesday in elections brought about by their support for tougher gun control laws.

According to unofficial results, voters in Colorado Springs favored recalling state Sen. John Morse, the body’s president, by 51 percent to 49 percent. With 100 percent of precincts reporting, state Sen. Angela Giron of Pueblo was defeated in her recall election, 56 percent to 44 percent.

Defeating incumbents is a tough thing, which means Republicans did a great job of appealing to voters. Then they did a great job of getting these people to the polls. Mitch Berg notes that gun control advocates’ money didn’t win the day:

Even better? The avalanche of liberal money didn’t do the job (emphasis added)!:

While both sides campaigned vigorously, knocking on doors, holding rallies and driving voters to the polls, gun-control advocates far outspent their opponents. A range of philanthropists, liberal political groups, unions and activists raised a total of $3 million to defend Mr. Morse and Ms. Giron. Mr. Bloomberg personally gave $350,000.

Money won’t defeat tons of true believers. People still believe in the right to keep and bear arms. They still believe in the right to defend themselves and their families.

Nedless to say, Democrats were licking their wounds after these stinging defeats:

Colorado’s Democratic governor, John Hickenlooper, said he was “disappointed by the outcome of the recall elections” before calling on state residents to “refocus again on what unites Coloradans, creating jobs, educating our children, creating a healthier state, and on finding ways to keep Colorado moving forward.”

In other words, they want to put this defeat in the rear view mirror ASAP. They’d rather change the subject than defend their position on gun control. Meanwhile, Republicans were jubilant:

The Colorado Republican Party called the vote results “a loud and clear message to out-of-touch Democrats across the nation” in a statement released late Tuesday.

It’s natural for people to gloat following a big victory like this. The Colorado GOP is right that tons of Democrats are out of touch with people on gun control and other issues. It’s proof that Democrats who listen to their special interest fanatic base will get defeated.

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The federal government is attempting to reduce gun violence by taxing law-abiding citizens through this legislation:

SEC. 4181. IMPOSITION OF TAX.

‘There is hereby imposed upon the sale by the manufacturer, producer, or importer of the following articles a tax equivalent to the specified percent of the price for which so sold:

‘(1) Articles taxable at 20 percent:
‘(A) Pistols.
‘(B) Revolvers.
‘(C) Firearms (other than pistols and revolvers).
‘(D) Any lower frame or receiver for a firearm, whether for a semiautomatic pistol, rifle, or shotgun that is designed to accommodate interchangeable upper receivers.

‘(2) Articles taxable at 50 percent: Shells and cartridges.’.

(b) Exemption for United States- Subsection (b) of section 4182 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 is amended to read as follows:
‘(b) Sales to United States- No firearms, pistols, revolvers, lower frame or receiver for a firearm, shells, and cartridges purchased with funds appropriated for any department, agency, or instrumentality of the United States shall be subject to any tax imposed on the sale or transfer of such articles.’

First, this bill won’t get a hearing in the House of Representatives. It’s going nowhere fast. Second, even if such a bill would pass, it wouldn’t reduce gun violence. Violent criminals commit violent crimes. The feds imposing a huge sales tax on guns and ammo won’t stop gun violence because violent criminals don’t buy guns and ammunition from retailers. They buy those things on the black market.

The only impact this legislation would have is on law-abiding citizens. It’ll dramatically drive up the cost of guns and ammunition for law-abiding citizens, making it more difficult for people to defend themselves. This is as nutty as Seattle starting a campaign to announce which stores are gun-free:

MAYOR MCGINN: Over 50 businesses in Seattle have declared themselves as gun-free zones and they would prefer that people not come in with guns. And if they do come in with guns, they will be asked to leave.
GRETA: Mayor, before I got into TV, I was a criminal defense attorney and if my clients heard that there was a store that was part of a gun-free zone, it would be open season on that store. And I know that part of the program is that they put stickers in the windows.

This is just the opening to the interview. Watch the entire thing to see just how naive this mayor is. Frankly, it’s breathtaking.

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