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Tuesday, May 14, 2013

NRA loves Christie’s ridiculous non-plan to deal with gun violence

Talking Points Memo: Campaign finance reports filed this week by New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) show he has collected $3,000 in donations since March from a lobbyist with the National Rifle Association.

The latest of those reports became public Monday, just as Christie’s Democratic opponent in the Garden State governor’s race, state Sen. Barbara Buono, has been hitting him for having a weak stance on gun control.

“We’ve seen really exceptional leadership across the river with Gov. Cuomo and Mayor Bloomberg, but unfortunately, in New Jersey, Gov. Christie has not shown leadership,” Buono told TPM by phone on Monday evening.
“Her criticism has centered on a task force Christie launched in January to address violence following the school shooting in Newtown, Conn.,” the report goes on. “Buono has repeatedly described the recommendations issued by that commission as ‘shallow’ and accused Christie of using it to avoid the issue of gun control immediately after the shooting.”

“Shallow” works, but “a joke” would be good too. “He set up this commission right after Newtown. I’m not sure why he set up the commission considering Vice President Biden had already set up a commission,” said Buono. “It really appeared as though it was a delay tactic to delay and put it off hoping that people would calm down after the latest tragedy.”

The commission’s recommendations: criminalize the video games like “Call of Duty,” as well as mental illness. There’s even a call to ban the Barrett .50 caliber rifle — not because it’s been a problem in New Jersey, but because it’s featured in “Call of Duty.” The NRA is apparently cool with this ban, I suppose because it helps lay the blame for gun violence in America on video games and not the deep saturation of guns in our population.

Meanwhile, the state legislature is expected to pass legislation ignoring the panel’s recommendations and instead expanding background checks. That legislation may not have a bright future and this might explain why the NRA is shoring up Christie early — a veto of background checks legislation is pretty much the same as voting against it. Ask Kelly Ayotte how that sort of thing plays in the northeast these days.

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