Two readers saw our post yesterday and independently e-mailed the NRA in a panic. Surely, surely, the organization isn’t about to endorse … Harry Reid, is it?
Here’s what each of them got in reply. One simple question as you read: Why didn’t this e-mail end after the first two paragraphs?
Thank you for contacting NRA-ILA regarding the recent rumor that NRA-PVF has indicated they will endorse Harry Reid.
Regarding any potential endorsement of Sen. Reid in the upcoming elections, NRA-PVF has not yet announced any ratings or endorsements in this race. Ratings and endorsements will be determined closer to the election. It is important to note, however, that the NRA is a single issue organization and that when our ratings and endorsements are announced, they are based solely on a candidate’s support for, or opposition to, our Second Amendment rights. Other issues, as important as they may be to many people, do not and cannot play any role in those decisions. NRA represents a broad coalition of American gun owners, who are bound together by their support for the right to keep and bear arms.
In 2004, Senator Reid was rated “B” in his reelection by the NRA Political Victory Fund. Since then, as U.S. Senate Majority Leader, Senator Reid has proven himself to be a supporter of our Second Amendment rights. It would be accurate to say that few, if any, of NRA’s legislative victories in Congress during the last six years would have occurred without his active support.
As an example, he was instrumental in Senate passage (and eventual enactment into law) of the “Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act” (PLCAA)”, which shut down reckless lawsuits against gun manufacturers and dealers that attempted to hold them liable for the misuse of firearms by criminals. Sen. Reid also cosponsored S. 659 (PLCCA) in the 108th Congress and voted against “poison pill” amendments to it, including the Feinstein Amendment to renew the federal ban on so-called “assault weapons”, and the Kennedy Amendment that would have banned most hunting ammunition.
Following Hurricane Katrina, he voted for legislation, that is now federal law, to prohibit gun confiscation during states of emergency. He also voted for legislation to allow commercial airline pilots to be armed in the cockpit to protect their passengers and crew. In this congressional session, Sen. Reid voted for the Ensign Amendment to repeal Washington D.C.’s gun ban and restore self-defense rights in our nation’s capital. He cosponsored similar legislation–S. 1414–in the 108th Congress. He also voted for an amendment to allow law-abiding citizens to carry firearms for self-defense in national parks and wildlife refuges. This federal policy change just took effect on February 22.
Early last year, Sen. Reid emphatically stated that he would oppose any effort to reinstate an “assault weapons” ban if the Senate were to vote on it in the future. In addition, he voted last year for the Thune-Vitter Amendment to provide national reciprocity for state Right-to-Carry permits. He also voted twice for the Wicker Amendment allowing Amtrak passengers to include firearms in their checked luggage. These votes were possible only because of Senator Reid’s actions in his capacity as Senate Majority Leader. Finally, he was among the 58 Senators who signed the pro-gun congressional amicus brief in the McDonald v. Chicago case, argued before the U.S. Supreme Court on March 2nd, which will decide whether the Second Amendment applies to all states and localities.
Most recently, the NRA worked with Sen. Reid to include in his manager’s amendment to the health care reform bill a provision that prohibits the disclosure or collection of information relating to the lawful ownership, use or storage of firearms or ammunition and also prohibits lawful gun ownership, possession and use from being used as a factor to determine eligibility or premium rates for health insurance. This provision was adopted on December 22, 2009 and was included in this legislation when it was signed into law on March 23.
Finally, Senator Reid is opposed to any anti-gun treaties that might come before the U.S. Senate for ratification.
These are a few examples of Senator Reid’s support and leadership on Second Amendment issues. Given the Senate could vote on gun-related issues in the coming months, rest assured any votes will be considered in future candidate evaluations. Regarding NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre and NRA-ILA Executive Director Chris Cox recently attending the grand opening of the Clark County Shooting Park (CCSP) with U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and other Nevada elected officials.
The CCSP is the largest shooting park in the world. This 2,900-acre state-of-the-art facility is devoted entirely to the shooting sports and is the nation’s premier shooting park. As the nation’s largest shooting sports organization, the NRA’s presence at the ribbon-cutting ceremony should come as no surprise. NRA actively worked with several Members of the Nevada congressional delegation, including Senator Reid, to ensure that this range was built. The development and construction of the CCSP has the full bipartisan support of the Nevada congressional delegation, and Nevada’s Republican Governor.
Senator Reid was instrumental in arranging not only the transfer of the then-federal lands to Clark County where the Park is located, but also in securing $61 million in funding to develop and build the Park. The Clark County Shooting Park would not have been built without his active efforts and support.
Once again, thank you for your inquiry.
If you didn’t read Erick Erickson’s post raising the alarm about the NRA and Reid, scroll through it and note how many anti-gun votes he’s taken over the years. Granted, few of them are recent — only one since 2005 — but surely his record, Angle’s record, and the prospect of thousands of angry Republican NRA donors tearing up their checkbooks point towards endorsing Angle. Right? Exit question: They’re going to end up endorsing no one in this race, aren’t they?