Monday, October 16, 2006

It's Concealed Carry, Stupid

WEAU-TV in Eau Claire did a story last week on where Wisconsin hunters are lining up in the race for governor.

While Mark Green has the backing of the NRA, the story tells us, Governor Doyle has the endorsement of the Wisconsin League of Conservation Voters.

The story notes how the NRA is trying to rile-up hunters this election season to unseat Doyle. In all of the group's ads and billboards attacking Doyle there is an attempt to link "sportsmen" with "gun owners" in a united front against the governor.

But, in reality, the NRA's goals in Wisconsin this election season have nothing to do with hunting.

The subjective "F" rating the NRA gave Doyle is entirely a reaction to the governor's vetoes of concealed carry. That's it.

One look at the Wisconsin page on the NRA site highlights the group's priorities in the state. Nearly every article on the page concerns concealed carry. In fact, the only legislation noted on the site that pertains to hunting is a highly controversial bill to allow 8-year-olds to hunt, which couldn't even make it out of the GOP-controlled state legislature.

What's more, just read the speeches given by the top executives of the NRA at the group's recent convention in Milwaukee. Here's the speech by the group's political chief Chris Cox, and here's another by its CEO Wayne LaPierre. You won't find one complaint in either about Doyle's record on hunting rights. But both speeches are overflowing with fiery rants about the governor's opposition to concealed carry.

The tactic of the NRA in the Wisconsin gubernatorial race is simple: Substitute hunting for concealed carry. That way the group can harp on a topic that hardly anyone in Wisconsin opposes, while avoiding the topic that polls show most Wisconsinites don't support.

After all, the heated nature of concealed carry is best exemplified in Mark Green's complete unwillingness to touch it throughout his run for governor (which I discuss in more detail here).

There is simply nothing substantial on the line in this gubernatorial race when it comes to hunting. In Wisconsin, the NRA is about concealed carry, plain and simple.

It's just a shame that at least one media outlet in the state fell for the ruse.


Blogger Midthun said...

So why don't they change their name to reflect their true mission...NWA! Just a thought.

October 16, 2006  

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