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North Carolina Firearms Trainer Takes Aim at Virginia CHP Requirments

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BearingArms.com has the story here.  Larry Wegman, a firearms trainer in Wake County, North Carolina, plays right into the hands of the gun ban lobby with his comments against the online option available for Virginia Concealed Handgun (CHP) permits. WRAL, the media outlet that Wegman collaborated with, doesn't even accurately describe the Virginia CHP requirements.

I think most people will agree that the requirements of most states to qualify for a concealed carry permit aren't what any serious gun owner would call "training," they are minimum requirements.  Virginia even accepts hunter safety courses as meeting the "training" requirement for a CHP.  However, I don't think it is a stretch to say that the vast majority of people who carry concealed are constantly training, rather it be self training at the range or taking additional courses and certifications. This is borne out by the fact there are so few incidents involving misuse of a firearm by permit holders.  So to have a firearms trainer team up with the media to trash online minimum requirement courses is nothing less than a slap in the face.

Gun Ban Lobby Looking Forward to Hillary Clinton

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The Hill reports this morning that the though of Hillary Clinton's White House bid is energizing the gun ban lobby, believing she is the one who can finish the task that Barack Obama couldn't on criminalizing private transfers:
Gun control advocates have high hopes for Hillary Clinton’s presidential run, viewing her as an ally who can finish the push for tightened background checks that has stalled in President Obama’s second term.

Clinton, the frontrunner for the Democratic nomination, has been a staunch advocate of gun-control proposals such as expanding background checks and banning assault weapons. Last summer, she ripped groups that oppose those ideas as out of step with public opinion.

“We cannot let a minority of people, and that’s what it is, it is a minority of people, hold a view point that terrorizes the majority of people,” Clinton said during a CNN town hall event.It's not really clear how she would be any more successful than Obama since even with the U.S. Senate in the hands of the Democrats and run by Obama's lackey, Harry Reid, they fell well short of the votes needed to take away our rights.  It is also likely that even though Republicans will have a tough battle to hold their Senate majority in 2016 since they have to defend far more seats than Democrats, that there will be enough pro-rights votes in the Senate and definitely in the House to keep her from successfully pushing further restrictions.

Dan Gross of the Brady Campaign believes Clinton can make the sales pitch on so-called "expanded background checks" during the campaign but the Hill pointed out that pushing gun control may pay dividends with the left but could also prove a liability in several battleground states.
For the first time in decades, a majority of Americans say it is more important to protect gun rights than it is to limit gun ownership, according to a December poll from the Pew Research Center.

The same Pew poll found that a slight majority of women now believe owning a handgun can protect them from becoming victims of crime.

This rising popularity of guns among women could help Republicans in swing states like Florida, Ohio, Colorado, Virginia, North Carolina, and New Hampshire, according to GOP strategist Ford O’Connell.Gun control advocates fire back that a 2013 poll showed 90% of the public supports "expanded background checks." But is that really the caseIt really depends on how the question is asked.

I'm still not ready to bet the farm that Clinton will be the Democratic nominee, but I would be willing to bet whoever the nominee is, it won't be a friend of gun owners.

Julie Golob's First NRA Family Insights Vlog

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Champion shooter and self-described "Proud NRA Mom" Julie Golob has become a familiar voice for firearm safety.  Shortly after appearing in a new NSSF Project Childsafe video, she has just appeared in the first of what will be a monthly NRA Family Insights video.  She has chosen Family Gun Safety as her first topic.
Julie is a great spokesperson for the shooting sports.  As a mom she is also a credible voice to speak to parents with firearms and children in the home.  And, since women are the fastest grown segment of the firearm owning public, this short video offers some basic tips for families that are also first time gun owners.

Is This the Answer to Your .22LR Woes?

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The great thing about the NRA Annual Meetings and Exhibits is the opportunity to see and speak to so many vendors, not only firearm distributors but entrepreneurs that have interesting products.  One such vendor was Sharp Shooter 22 LR Reloading.  Reload rim fire ammo you ask?  The answer is yes.  According to Brian Nixon and Dennis Shultz, while a new brick of .22LR can cost around $60, with this product, with this product you can reload a brick for around $8 and have ammo whenever you want it.  Cam Edwards of NRANews.com had the opportunity to speak to the Sharpshooter 22LR Reloader Team to find out more about their product.
You can see the process from start to finish below
Hat tip to NRANews.com.

Dudley Brown Shows His True Colors in Colorado

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There is an individual who runs two groups, one state and one national, who fashions himself as the true champion of our rights.  In reality, he is a huckster who has never done anything constructive for the movement legislatively or electorally but takes self-promotion to new heights all in the name of raising money.  The individual's name is Dudley Brown and his groups are the Colorado group Rocky Mountain Gun Owners and the national group is National Association for Gun Rights.  You probably have seen his emails or fundraising efforts disguised as gun giveaways.

To show you just how dishonest this individual is, in 2013, at the height of the battle to defeat President Obama's gun control proposals, Brown came into Virginia attacking NRA "A" rated U.S. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor.  Brown sent our an email announcing a press conference to roll out a television ad against Cantor that claimed he was supporting Obama's gun control.  The email also invited pro-gun supporters to the event.  Unfortunately for Brown, no press showed up although a handful of gun rights supporters did attend.  Brown spoke briefly, showed the attack ad, introduced his staff (which out numbered those in attendance) and ended the event.  That afternoon, he sent a follow-up email complete with a photo that made it appear media representatives were asking questions.  In reality it was a staged photo using the staff that was taken after the event had ended and everyone else left.  Brown later claimed credit for the defeat of Cantor in the 2014 primary, though his little seen ad played absolutely no role in the race.

Now, Brown has turned his attention on someone who has impeccable pro-rights credentials, Dave Kopel.  Earlier this month, the Colorado legislature was trying to repeal the 15 round limit on ammunition magazines that was passed in 2013.  Last week, the battle came to a head.  This from the Colorado Springs Gazette editorial board:
Many leading Democrats, since passing the laws, have conceded they went too far.
"A lot of people, if they'd known how much commotion was going to come out of the high-capacity magazines would've, probably would've looked for something different, looked for a different approach," Hickenlooper told Colorado sheriffs in 2014.

More recently, Rep. Joe Salazar extended an olive branch to Second Amendment defenders. The most controversial of the gun laws forbids magazines that hold more than 15 rounds. As vice chairman of the powerful House Veterans and Military Affairs Committee — where the majority party typically kills minority bills — Salazar has committed to supporting a bill that would increase the limit to 30 rounds. It signifies a potential big victory for Republicans and gun rights in a House controlled by Democrats. It represents the kind of bipartisanship Colorado has seldom witnessed in the past decade.

The compromise would resolve 99 percent of concerns about the magazine ban.

Salazar's cooperative attitude has received applause from Colorado's most tireless and successful Second Amendment defenders. Among them is attorney David Kopel, who helped win D.C. v. Heller and McDonald v. Chicago in the U.S. Supreme Court — the most important gun-rights victories of the 21st century. Kopel represented Colorado sheriffs in a lawsuit that challenged Colorado's new gun laws. But in the view of Rocky Mountain Gun Owners, Kopel is a problem. The group is distributing an ad that features Kopel's photo and the words: "Oppose the Kopel Kompromise."Moving the limit from 15 to 30 rounds would be considered a victory by most people as many rifle models come standard with magazines over 15 but less than or equal to 30.  But not Brown.  With people like him, it's all or nothing because that's how he can continue to raise money.

The Independence Institute, with which Kopel is affiliated, fired back.
In Virginia, we would not have passed the repeal of the restaurant ban if we had not compromised.  In the early days of the repeal effort, there were groups that wanted a straight repeal with no prohibition on consuming alcohol.  Those bills went nowhere.  They finally understood the only way to get the repeal was to include a prohibition on consuming alcohol.  The repeal finally passed, and was vetoed by Tim Kaine, but was finally signed by Bob McDonnell a couple years later.

People like Brown do more harm than they do good for our cause.  Thankfully, he has no influence in Virginia.

Bloomberg View Again Pushing Myth of No Gun Research

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The editors of BloombergView have once again trotted out the myth that the NRA has stymied gun related research over the last 20 years.
For two decades, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has been prohibited by Congress from using funds to “advocate or promote gun control.” (The National Institutes of Health faces a similar restriction.) Now there are signs the medical profession is getting fed up. In the April 7 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine is an editorial calling on physicians to demand the “resources and freedom” to do their jobs: reducing harm. Specifically, the journal calls for an end to the political blockade on research about the health effects of gun violence. I will give them credit for admitting the thesis of their article is not entirely true.
Not all research has been extinguished. Harvard, Johns Hopkins and the University of California at Davis are among the institutions that have produced notable studies in recent years. The National Institute of Justice has made limited forays into studying the criminal use of guns. But given the scope of the issue -- more than 30,000 firearm deaths and tens of thousands of injuries annually -- foundation grants and a bare trickle of government research can do only so much to advance understanding.According to the Crime Prevention Research Center, firearm related research has been as plentiful now as it was in the past.
There is no evidence that gun control research fell when restrictions were put on federally funded research. Indeed, whether one looks at the number of total articles or total pages, firearms research has been as high or higher than when the restrictions were enacted. In 2013, well before federal funding could have any impact on publications, there was an explosion in firearms research in medical journals.As Dr. Lott has pointed out, there has been no ban on firearm related research, just a ban on using available funds for injury prevention and control at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to advocate or promote gun control.  If that prohibition is responsible for the CDC not doing firearm related research now, doesn't that lead us to the conclusion their past research was for advocacy purposes?

New York Times: Has the NRA Won?

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That's the question New York Times' far left op/ed writer Charles M. Blow asks in response to the new Pew Research survey released last Friday that pointed out  "for the first time, more Americans say that protecting gun rights is more important than controlling gun ownership, 52 percent to 46 percent.”
It is now fair to ask whether the National Rifle Association is winning — or has in fact won — this era of the gun debate in this country. Gun control advocates have tried to use the horror that exists in the wake of mass shootings to catalyze the public into action around sensible gun restrictions. But rather than these tragedies being a cause for pause in ownership of guns, gun ownership has spiked in the wake of these shootings.Blow goes on to lay out the information Pew's survey shows about how the public's attitude has changed over time then concludes:
One may begrudge and bemoan the fact, but it is hard to deny it: the N.R.A. appears to be winning this round.

I'm sure Blow was moaning the entire time he wrote his column.

Tim Kaine Pushing Gun Control Again

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America's First Freedom (AFF) reports that Virginia's U.S. Senator Tim Kaine used the opportunity of the anniversary of the Virginia Tech shooting to push for "expanded background checks."
Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Va., went to the floor of the U.S. Senate to mark the anniversary of the Virginia Tech shootings by reading the names of the 32 victims and calling for more background checks—ironically of the type that the mass murderer there had already passed.As AFF noted, the Virginia Tech shooter passed a background check.  Had a so-called "universal background check" been law, it would not have stopped that horrible incident.  The reason the shooter passed the background check was because a state judge failed to involuntarily commit the shooter for mental health treatment, resulting in his name not being added as a prohibited person in the background database.

What may have reduced the number of deaths is what John Lott told WMAL"s Larry O’Connor last Thursday, putting an end to "gun free zones."

General Assembly Fails to Override McAuliffe Veto of Gun Bills, Spikes Anti-gun Substitute Bill

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Governor Terry McAuliffe had his way yesterday with the three vetoes he issued to pro-rights bills in late March.  The State Senate failed to override the veto of SB948, a bill that would have protected concealed carry permit (CHP) holders from the fishing expeditions of law enforcement in states that do not have permit reciprocity with Virginia. The vote fell three short of the 27 needed to override the veto and mirrored to vote on passage during the regular session.  The Senate also failed to override the veto of SB1137, Senator Tom Garrett's bill that would have allowed CHP holders to carry loaded long guns in their vehicles.  Senator Garrett requested the bill go by for the day rather than subject it an override vote that was likely to fail.  Senator Garrett has vowed to try again next year.  Finally, the State Senate failed to override McAuliffe's veto of HB2009, a bill that would have established uniform approval standards across the Commonwealth for NFA items by requiring when the certification of a chief law-enforcement officer is required by federal law for transfer of a firearm as defined in the National Firearms Act, such certification must be provided within 60 days if the applicant is not prohibited by law from receiving the firearm. If the applicant is prohibited by law from receiving the firearm, the chief law-enforcement officer or his designee shall notify the applicant in writing of the reason for the prohibition.  The House of Delegates has overridden the veto earlier in the day but the Senate vote was actually four less than the vote on passage during the regular session.  The vote to override was 21-18, while the vote on passage in February was 25-14.

There was some good news however yesterday.  The House rejected McAuliffe's amendment to HB2286.  As passed by the House and Senate, HB2286 provided that the prohibition on the possession and transportation of firearms and ammunition by convicted felons does not apply to a felon whose right to possess firearms or ammunition has been restored under the law of another state.  Governor McAuliffe submitted an amendment in the nature of a substitute that added new misdemeanor crimes for any person who knowingly and intentionally possesses, transports, or carries any firearm following a misdemeanor conviction for an offense that occurred on or after July 1, 2015, for the offenses of (i) stalking in violation of § 18.2-60.3 when the victim was a family or household member, (ii) sexual battery in violation of § 18.2-67.4 when the victim was a family or household member, (iii) assault and battery of a family or household member, or (iv) any offense substantially similar to clause (i), (ii), or (iii) in the laws of any other state or political subdivision thereof is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.  A bill with these provisions had previously been defeated in both the House and the State Senate.  Yesterday, the House ruled that the substitute was not germane.  The original bill is now before the Governor and he may sign it as is or veto it.

Yesterday's votes show the importance of this year's General Assembly elections where all 100 members of the House and 40 members of the State Senate are up for re-election.  Gun owners need to gain at least three Senate seats to have the opportunity to advance pro-rights legislation in the next two years.

Kahr Arms Showcases New Gen2 at NRA Annual Meeting

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Kahr Arms used the NRA Annual Meeting to showcase their new Gen2 Premium line of handguns ahead of this summer's availability.  With tighter tolerances and many upgrades, the company's web site notes the Gen2 "truly is the second generation of Kahr pistols."  Some of the new features include:
  • shortened trigger stroke allowing for quicker firing rates – 30% shorter than premium model
  • integrated trigger safety
  • accessory rail for lasers and lights
  • front slide serrations on 5” and 6” barrel models
  • 6” compensated barrel model
  • Leupold® Deltapoint™ Red Dot mount (5” barrel models) with tall target sights
  • Leupold® Deltapoint™ Red Dot optic included with 6” barrel models
  • TRUGLO® TFX™ Tritium/Fiber-Optic Day/Night sights standard on 3.5” and 4” barrel models
  • Safe-Cam striker-fired action
  • double recoil spring system for reduced felt recoil
  • redesigned magazine base and grip for a sleeker look
  • slide machined from the highest quality of stainless steel available for firearms
  • erial tag on grip frame
  • ergonomic single stack grip frame fits most hand sizes from small to large
  • ships with 3 magazines and a lockable, hard, polymer case
Outdoor Channel's Michael Bane spoke with Kahr Arms' Frank Harris about the new offerings showcased in Nashville.
Kahr rolled out eight of the firearms in Nashville but a total of 12 models will be available by December 2015 with four barrel lengths and three calibers including 9mm, .40 S&W, and .45 ACP. Premium doesn't only describe the model, it could also be used to describe the price.  The MSRP on the new series will range from $976 to $1668.  The 9mm and .45 ACP will be available in July/August 2015 and the .40 S&W will be available in December.

VSSA Member Ascends to NRA Presidency

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Yesterday, the NRA Board of Directors elected Allan D. Cors President of the NRA.  From the NRA Blog:
A lifelong hunter and competitive shooter with a passion for collecting World War II military vehicles, Cors has served as president of the NRA Foundation and is a member of the NRA’s Executive Committee. He was a principal advocate for the establishment of the NRA’s Political Action Committee. Cors served as a counsel with the Judiciary Committee in the U.S. House of Representatives. He also served as the director of government affairs and senior vice president at Corning for 34 years.Cors has been a member of VSSA since 1978.  He will serve a term of two years and will likely be succeeded by Pete Brownell, who was elected 1st Vice President.

Everytown, Moms Demand Action, Increase Bullying of Kroger on Firearm Policy

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It appears Bloomberg's gun ban groups have not given up on bullying Kroger to change their policy related to open carry of firearms in their stores. Forbes reports that Bloomberg's Everytown for Gun Safety and  Moms Demand Action have joined together to released a video ad targeting Kroger that the groups plan to market online. They've also stood up a "microsite" called Groceries not Guns where supporters of the gun ban groups can enter the total of groceries purchased at Kroger competitors:
A representative of the two groups made it clear they’ll carry on pressuring Kroger until the supermarket chain agrees to ask customers to forgo their guns while grocery shopping. Their expenditure on this campaign is just shy of the $1 million mark to date.Interestingly enough, of the competitors Moms Demand lists as alternatives to Kroger that I frequent (Costco and Target), I don't recall seeing signs posted regarding firearms in Virginia Costco and Target stores.  Please continue to let Kroger know you appreciate them honoring the firearm laws of the states in which they do business.

Women of Weatherby A Resource for New Female Shooters

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During the NRA Annual Meetings in Nashville, Michael Bane had the opportunity to speak with the Women of Weatherby, Haley Heath, Rachel Ahtila, and Karissa Phantz at the Outdoor/Sportsmen Channel Booth.  The ladies talked about how Weatherby has created a resource for the fastest growing segment of the firearms community.  According to the Women of Weatherby web site:
The Women of Weatherby team is comprised of three women known for their fierce independence, positive influence and unconditional love of the outdoors. Their vast experience and authenticity as hunters provide the perfect foundation to inspire the dreams of women at every level of hunting and shooting.Haley and Rachel noted that simply making firearms in purple, pink, and teal do not make them a woman's gun.  They said every woman is different and through the Women of Weatherby, the company has made a commitment to ensure that all women have the resources to make the right choice when it comes to owning and using firearms.

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Moms Demand Pathetic Excuse for Demonstration in Nashville

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All of my favorite blogs have posts about the Moms Demand Action so-called demonstration on Saturday during the NRA Annual Meeting.  My entire family went to Nashville so we took some time away from the Music City Center Saturday afternoon to take a walk down Broadway and get some ice cream at Mike's Ice Cream.  We must have missed the "protest" because we had walked all the way down to the river where it was held and there were no protesters at the time we were there but we passed four people with red Moms Demand t-shirts on our way back up Broadway. One of them had an arm full of t-shirts. Needless to say, according to folks who did see the dismal turnout, the crowd was much less than the 400 Moms Demand predicted.  My favorite photo though had to be the one that explained how Moms Demand made it look like there were more people than there actually were:
Bob Owens of Bearing Arms had this photo from the walking bridge above in comparison to one hallway at the Music City Center.
One photo is the entire @MomsDemand rally. The other is one hallway at #NRAAM2015 on a slow Friday morning. Hmmmm... pic.twitter.com/UZFNSE972F
— Bob Owens (@bob_owens) April 12, 2015Bob is also had this prediction:
PREDICTION: @MikeBloomberg is results oriented. @shannonrwatts is becoming a liability. She and @MomsDemand will be defunded within 2 years.
— Bob Owens (@bob_owens) April 12, 2015

Marco Rubio: We are at a Turning Point with the Second Amendment and National Security

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I've attended, or at least watched via the video feed in the convention center, or after I returned home, a number of NRA Annual Meeting Leadership Forum speeches since they began in 2008.  More times than not, speakers touch on the Second Amendment then go on to a laundry list of other issues that would fit more with a GOP Convention than a non-partisan organization.  While it may be safe to say a lot of gun owners fall on the conservative side of the aisle, what about those gun owners who aren't?  Are we discouraging those folks from being NRA members? 

Despite the fact there are very few national Democrats who vote the right way on the Second Amendment issue, resulting in most of the organization's national support going to Republicans, there are still states around the country that have Democrats who support the Second Amendment.  They receive support from the NRA when they are on the right side of the issue.  The NRA is a non-partisan single issue organization.  Support that issue and the NRA will support your re-election.

So, it was refreshing to hear Florida Senator Marco Rubio use his time Friday to speak almost entirely on the Second Amendment and how it relates to national security. The phrase "The Second Amendment is the Original Home Land Security" isn't just a slogan, and Rubio made the case on how the right to keep and bear arms and how it intersects with national security. 

Eddie Eagle Gets a Facelift

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One of the things I picked up at the NRA Annual Meetings was the just released updated Eddie Eagle video.  If you have children, you have probably seen the one dimensional cartoon that debuted in 1988.  With the wide use of computer generated images (CGI) for today's animation, the old version is a bit outdated.  The new video pairs Eddie with new friends known as "The Wing Team" to teach children what to do if they find a firearm.


The NRA has also updated the program web site.  It's still a program for young children but the update should make it more appealing and help get the message to kids that if you see a gun "Don't Touch, Leave the Area, and Tell and Adult."

Jim Shepherd: Hillary Gives NRA Last Word

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The Shooting Wire's Jim Shepherd ended today's edition with a wrap-up of the NRA Annual Meeting and started with a pronouncement that something that happened hundreds of miles away from Nashville may do more to unite the NRA's membership than the upbeat positive event that just ended:
As the one hundred and forty-fourth annual meeting of the National Rifle Association wrapped up in Nashville, Tennessee's Music City Center yesterday, one of the most galvanizing actions for the NRA's membership took place hundreds of miles away.

With Hillary Clinton's virtual announcement of her formal candidacy for president, the NRA and the many Second Amendment groups in attendance finally have the face of the anti-gun movement firmly fixed in their political sights. As the parade of potential Republican presidential candidates rolled (slowly) across the stage on Friday, many of them took pointed shots at President Obama's record, but others took advantage of the opportunity to let the NRA faithful in attendance know they were ready for "Madame Clinton" when her apparently inevitable other shoe was once again digitally tossed into the ring with considerably less invective than a rumored ashtray was passed to her husband in the White House.We've been down this road before where we focus on defeating Hillary Clinton and ended up with someone as bad if not worse.  In 2008 most anyone would have said that Clinton was going to be the Democrat nominee. She had the early start, the popular (among Democrats at least) former president husband, and it looked like she could not be beat.  Sound familiar?  So you can excuse me when I heard a focus on Hillary at Friday's NRA-ILA Leadership Conference as maybe just a little bit of déjà vu.


With no other announced candidate on the Democratic side of the race, it makes sense to focus on the known.  There is talk however that former Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley may jump in an that he would possibly run to Hillary's left (as if that is possible).  His record on Second Amendment issues are just as bad.  Let's hope this year, if there ends up being a competitive Democratic primary race, we will get the word out on how each of the candidates stand on our issue.  Because, as more than one person has noted, the more people who see Hillary, the less they like her.

Guns and Politics at First Day of NRA Annual Meeting

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While thousands walked the exhibit floor, a sold out crowd heard a line up of GOP current and former elected officials tout there ability to protect our Second Amendment rights as well as other issues they believe are important to those in the crowd.Senator Ted Cruz and Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker received some of the loudest applause from the audience. Cruz claimed he was the one who had consistently fought for conservative  principles, even when it was not popular.  Walker talked about his modest upbringing.
Jeb Bush, who has been tagged as the "establishment" candidate, said he would put his record on the Second Amendment while Governor of Florida up against any other candidate.Former Governor Rick Perry said he is undecided on whether he will run again but gave a spirited speech none the less. Not long after I received a fundraising email from Perry's PAC touting his Life Membership in the NRA.Other speakers included Governor Bobby Jindal, Donald Trump, and Marco Rubio.  You can watch all of the speeches of the day at NRANEWS.COM.  You can also watch today's Annual Meeting of Members live on several NRA video platforms, including NRANews.

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