January 10th, 2013
08:19 PM ET
9 years ago

National Rifle Association gearing up for a fight

Washington (CNN) - The National Rifle Association is gearing up to face one of the strongest challenges to its cause in many years: recommendations from an Obama administration working group on gun violence that are expected to address assault weapons and high-capacity magazine clips.

CNN has learned the NRA is also preparing an ad campaign, expected to include both print and television advertisements, that would begin soon to help mount its opposition to new gun restrictions. NRA officials refused to discuss specifics.

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The administration's working group on violence, led by Vice President Joe Biden, will deliver its recommendations to President Barack Obama by Tuesday.

"We are mobilizing for a fight," NRA President David Keene told CNN. "We will engage our members."

The association is planning to send mailings to its members urging them to contact members of Congress with their opposition to new gun laws. "Let them know you feel strongly," is how Keene summarized the group's message to member.

The NRA is also sending personnel to gun shows to help to mobilize gun owners to voice their opposition.

Since the shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, last month, the organization has added 100,000 new members, bringing its total membership to 4.2 million, NRA officials told CNN. Because of the increased attention on the issue, the officials think they will soon hit 5 million.

The NRA was one of the groups representing gun owners that met with Biden and his group Thursday afternoon.

After the session, the group issued a statement, saying "this task force spent most of its time on proposed restrictions on lawful firearms owners … it is unfortunate this Administration continues to insist on pushing failed solutions to our nation's most pressing problems."

A White House official did not comment on the meeting other than to say it lasted just over an hour and a half.

Biden earlier in the day told a separate meeting of his working group, this one with victims' groups and gun safety organizations, that "there's got to be some common ground here, not to solve every problem, but diminish the probability that … these mass shootings will occur and diminish the probability that our children are at risk in our schools."

Keene told CNN's "The Situation Room" that one area where he thought the group and the Obama administration could possibly find some common ground was on the need for background checks. However, he said he did not support instituting them at gun shows. Currently buyers at gun shows do not have to undergo the same background checks as buyers at gun stores.

Filed under: Gun rights • NRA
soundoff (523 Responses)
  1. Yeoomala

    and the sheep will buy into their propaganda of fear

    January 11, 2013 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  2. Johnny 5

    The Paranoid States of America. Don't go swimming directly after eating a heavy meal or you may get a cramp, don't run with scissors, and be sure to tie your shoes or you may trip and fall.

    January 11, 2013 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  3. rs

    Fact Checker-
    Wrong again- gun shows in AZ- no background check; private sales- no background check. As usual, the GOP and the NRA oppose changing this.

    January 11, 2013 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  4. American Biker X

    It is Scary how so many are willing to become Slaves out of Fear ! Too many Cowards in this Country desperate for someone to take care of them they are willing to give up everything for a false Promise of Safety ! Reread your History I am embarrassed at so many of you who call yourselves Americans yet have No Idea what being an American means !!! All Stricter Gun Laws do is take away Guns from the Good Guy and flood the Black market making it easier for the Bad guys to get them ! No Ban on anything has ever done anything but make the Under world Stronger !!!

    January 11, 2013 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  5. Pro Gun

    If you believe that "assault rifles" and "high capacity mags" should be banned. Why dont you go over to the closest fence and get your head stuck......fekn sheep.
    This govt is not your friend. They do not care about you. 9/11, Iraq, housing colapse and the financial colapse. All done by Uncle Sam and company. Now they want the guns that can be used to defend against tyranny. All these school shootings were done by people with severe mental issues who were on some kind of man made anti-psycho drug. You will change your mind once they start rounding you up for the fema camps. Most of americas crime wouldnt exist if our justice dept. would get their "politically correct heads" out of their ass. When some body murders and its proven with NO doubt.....you dont imprison them for life. You march them right outside and put one in between the eyes. You dont imprison rapists and child molesters......you march them right outside and hang them. etc. etc. If the justice dept. would finally learn how to do their jobs......this shat probably wouldnt happen and we wouldnt even be having this discussion.

    January 11, 2013 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  6. Small PP

    You Libruls don't understand. We need our automatic weapons to fight off the killer drones that Obama has sic'd on every God fearing White Man in this country. I shot down three of these drones this morning before breakfast.

    January 11, 2013 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  7. Chumlee

    NRA = sickos. psychos.

    January 11, 2013 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  8. calamity jane

    I don't think I have ever seen such a hate-driven group of people as the NRA. That whats-his-name who Piers Morgan interviewed was just a vile, screaming, purple-faced, vein popping lunatic who should be the first one considered for a background check. Everyone in this world compromises. You don't get out of this life without compromising. The NRA believes in an all-or-nothing approach. Who in this world gets that luxury? Reading some of the postings here by gun crazy (and I mean mentally unstable crazy) people just proves the point that some people should just not have guns. I mean look at GunOwner's post – he is hoping that your family is murdered so he can laugh at your face. He invites you to step on his property so he can shoot you and if you survive, shoot you again. I have never seen a more vile, vitriolic, spastic group of people in my life.

    January 11, 2013 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  9. LarryOH

    Most posters have great arguments for and against firearms.
    Individuals who appose firearms ask yourself should all firearms be banned or certain ones?
    Individuals who are for firearms ask yourself what type of recreational shooting requires 30 rounds?(Hunting, Target Shooting, Plinking)?
    Individuals who appose high capcity magazines, do you think criminals will not be able to to attain illegal firearms and firearm accessories?
    Is the NRA's hardline stance going to doom your everyday gun owner?

    January 11, 2013 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  10. marty

    Keep in mind that the American people voted for Vice President Joe Biden to help establish rules for our country.....not....the NRA! The silliness perpetuated by the NRA has gotten very old, their members are becoming irrelevant and it appears that their brains have atrophied.

    January 11, 2013 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  11. tombogan03884

    The last line of this article is an out right lie .
    " Currently buyers at gun shows do not have to undergo the same background checks as buyers at gun stores. "
    If you buy from a licensed dealer at a gun show you go through exactly the same process as you would at their store.
    The so called "gun show loophole" allows a private individual to sell or transfer to another private individual, such as giving your fathers shot gun to your son, with out govt approval .
    Gun control is not about guns, it's about control .

    January 11, 2013 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  12. floridasboy

    "The world's largest army... America 's hunters! A blogger added up the deer license sales in just a handful of states and arrived at a striking conclusion: ... There were over 600,000 hunters this season in the state of Wisconsin .. Allow me to restate that number: 600,000 Over the last several months, Wisconsin's hunters became the eighth largest army in the world. More men under arms than in Iran. More than France and Germany combined. These men deployed to the woods of a single American state, Wisconsin , to hunt with firearms, and no one was killed. That number pales in comparison to the 750,000 who hunted the woods of Pennsylvania and Michigan's 700,000 hunters, all of whom have now returned home safely. Toss in a quarter million hunters in West Virginia and it literally establishes the fact that the hunters of those four states alone would comprise the largest army in the world. And then add in the total number of hunters in the other 46 states. It's millions more. The point? America will forever be safe from foreign invasion with that kind of home-grown firepower. Hunting... it's not just a way to fill the freezer. It's a matter of national security. That's why all enemies, foreign and domestic, want to see us disarmed. Food for thought, when next we consider gun control.

    January 11, 2013 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  13. Person of Interest

    The NRA does not represent gun owners. It represents Republican/conservative gun owners. I'm a veteran, a "Blue Dog" Democrat, and a gun owner. And I will never be a member of the NRA. They constantly get involved in issues other than gun rights. And even the ones that they do get involved in are more out of allowing anyone to own anything.

    That being said before a right-wing nut job makes a comment about that. I'm against a complete assault weapons ban. I do think not everyone should be allowed to own an assault weapon simply because they have not broken any laws before. I think we need to be responsible owners and suppliers of firearms, which is why I am for registration. For those of you that say it is the first step to them taking your firearms away, you are foolish. There are too many firearms in this country for them to "come and take my guns" as a friend of mine says. Plus, you add in the number of medium-highly trained veterans there are in this country that are gun owners and they'd have to send a SWAT team to a hundreded of thousand households to do it (and good luck cleaning up afterwords, it'll be messy).

    January 11, 2013 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  14. cnnguy

    so much for the nra trying to help with anything

    January 11, 2013 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  15. Outsider.92

    I own guns and have no problem with a regulation requiring that I obtain a license for them. It gives a reason to arrest the people who do not obey the laws. There are many like me.

    January 11, 2013 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  16. The Other Bob


    Amen Bob,
    you think that our President (who is from Chicago) would see that the regulations in the Windy City aren't working to well. Why would he want the regulations to be passed on to other places?
    All that means is that there needs to be FEDERAL controls because unless you set up border crossing "checkpoints" into areas with strict controls, nothing prevents anyone from bringing in weapons from other areas with less strict controls. Chicago and NYC are perfect examples of this. It's because of checkpoints at the US-Canadian bored that there is minimal inflow of American weapons into Canada.

    January 11, 2013 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  17. Chaerlotte

    Dear NRA: "Focus on the Mentally Ill" well – we ARE. We're focusing on you, aren't we??

    January 11, 2013 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  18. chris

    WOW... These people that keep giving money to the NRA must be really dim. The NRA is an arm of big gun manufacturers created to sell more guns. Somehow, they manage to get their customer to pay for this marketing and advertising bill. It's incredible and quite brilliant.

    I wish there are an angle I could use to get my customers to pay for my marketing and media. Guess I need to create a big bad FAKE evil enemy first and convince my customers that their very lifestyle is at risk.

    January 11, 2013 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  19. Ozzie

    When your gods are Wayne LaPierre, Rush Limbaugh, Sarah Palin, Sean Hannity, Glenn Beck, Alan West, Michele Bachman, Rick Santorum, Billy O'Reilly, and many other pseudo Pro-Life folks, you are in deep trouble. Hey, NRA folks. Find your own conscience and courage. Stop allowing these very sick people to manipulate you for their gain and profit.

    January 11, 2013 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  20. freya

    Oh I can see now the NRA are oiling their weapons with excitement.

    January 11, 2013 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  21. T Patrick

    Background checks at all gun sales is fine with me, just like we should have voter ID to vote,,,right?

    January 11, 2013 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  22. martiniano

    Take a look at the comment from Pro Gun at 1:43 PM. He is the epitome of what is wrong in this discussion. He is obviously terrified of his own government. Our government is me and you and his like are terrified of us and not only fantasize of being attacked but actually plan for it!

    That is paranoia and paranoia is a mental illness. Can guys like Pro Gun buy weapons legally? If so then THAT is where we need to start the changes.

    January 11, 2013 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  23. Survivorman

    The NRA should be branded a terrorist organization. Only then will the government & rational people have the power needed to deal with those lunatics.

    January 11, 2013 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  24. baxterrossgmailcom

    On average, about 300 people are struck by lightning each year in the United States.
    On average, about 300 people are killed with a rifle each year in the United States.
    The Clinton AWB had no measurable effect on crime for the decade it was in effect.

    If our goal here is to keep people safe from gun violence, we need to recognize that the vast majority of gun deaths have nothing to do with 30 round magazines and AR15s and have everything to do with gang violence in urban areas.

    If we continue to treat semi-automatic rifles as if they are the cause of the problem we will get nowhere because they result in such a small number of deaths each year they aren't worth targeting.

    January 11, 2013 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  25. Bob Cartia

    Wow,,,, people making comments about giving money to the NRA are dim, stupid, dumb,, whatever,,,, at least i was smart enough NOT to vote Obama the liar!!!! nHows that tax increase on your check going,,,, he also has said,, he doesnt want our guns,,,, He is the pshyco nut job, lying, arrogant ass, that has everyone,,,hanging onto his every hollow promise!!!! Wake up--taking away your rights--1st or 2nd Ammendment,,, is just the start, he is building a society of sheep,,, and is leading us all to slaughter!!!

    January 11, 2013 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
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