I’m not a big fan of the NRA at the upper strata of lobbying. It plans it safe to maintain the veneer of bipartisanship, it has to be poked and prodded to get involved with hot button issues, and it frequent tries to take credit for the work of other organizations and also let others take the fall.The NRA has become the definition of a phony boogie man. The left can use the NRA as a foil while more and more conservatives realize it more and more rests on its laurels and Charlton Heston’s memory while working as hard as possible to be a bipartisan organization. In fact, on more than one occasion the NRA has chosen not to fight on an issue because it didn’t want to hurt Democrats like Senator Pat Leahy of Vermont.You can get more details here on my views of the NRA, including its initial stance prohibiting its board members from testifying against Elena Kagan in her Senate confirmation hearing.This past Wednesday turned up the latest example of the National Rifle Association trying to have its cake and eat it too.
At Grover Norquist’s Wednesday meeting a discussion about the ongoing assault against ALEC, the American Legislative Exchange Council, came up. Multiple sources (there are hundreds in the room) tell me that the NRA representative took issue with ALEC getting rid of his public safety section. That section has drafted a model “stand your ground” law, which Florida passed.The NRA representative claimed that if ALEC was going to run away from the fight on these public safety issues, ALEC might just run away from other issues too, e.g. immigration.At that point the ALEC representative pointed out that ALEC had actually sought help from the NRA on “stand your ground” laws, but the NRA decided, yet again, to play it safe and wound up letting ALEC take the bullet. The funny thing is, if you search around for commentary on the “Stand Your Ground” law, more likely than not the left will cite the NRA as a culprit. Now we know, from behind closed doors, the NRA wouldn’t even help ALEC when they reached out on the issue.