I campaigned against this bill in 1994 as best I could – and it was one of two events (gays in the military being the other) that caused me to break with President Clinton and run away from the Democratic Party.
The assault weapons ban sunsets in September of this year. And I want it to sunset. It’s a stupid law that has done nothing to reduce or prevent crime.
I’m glad John Kerry has taken a stand on this – he’s made it very clear his opinion on this issue – and he just picked a fight with the largest special interest group. They turned 60 votes on this issue in a matter of minutes.
Time to donate some more money to NRA-ILA.
You can read more in today’s New York Times.
But Wayne LaPierre, executive vice president of the National Rifle Association, which has made legal immunity for gun makers and dealers one of its top legislative priorities, predicted the votes would hurt Democrats. Referring to the chairman of the Democratic National Committee, Mr. LaPierre said, “I can just see Terry McAuliffe cringing in his office all day long.”
The defeat of the immunity bill came after Mr. LaPierre sent e-mail messages to senators urging them to reject it. Some Senate Democrats who supported immunity were spotted reading the e-mail message on their BlackBerry pagers; within minutes, a copy of the message in which Mr. LaPierre said his group would use the vote “in our future evaluations and endorsement of candidates” was circulating in the Democrats’ cloakroom.
“I’m a bit numb,” said Senator Dianne Feinstein, Democrat of California, the lead sponsor of the assault weapons ban, said after the final vote. Of the rifle association, she said: “They had the power to turn around at least 60 votes in the Senate. That’s amazing to me.”