Monday, September 04, 2006
NRA finding success at state level
The National Rifle Association, after being rebuffed numerous times at the Congressional level, has found far more success at the state level, according to an article in today's Washington Post.
Their successes in the last few years include the General Assembly's decision to pass a law allowing Missourians to carry concealed weapons. This occurred despite state voters clearly stating they did not want such a law just a few years earlier. (The GOP-led legislature did the same thing during this past session when it ignored the will of state voters and removed all caps on campaign contributions.)
The issues the NRA lobbies for clearly resonate with a large number of Missourians. There is, after all, a Second Amendment to the U. S. Constitution which guarantees the right to bear arms, but something else has been occurring concerning the National Rifle Association and our area legislators which concerns me.
At least one legislator, Marilyn Ruestman, R-Joplin, has paid her NRA dues with campaign funds. If the organization means that much to her, she should pay for it out of her own pockets, as her constituents have to do.
Ms. Ruestman, of course, was the sponsor of the frontier justice bill now signed into law, pushed across the nation by NRA (though Ms. Ruestman claimed she sponsored it after hearing from numerous constituents about this problem that no one else seems to have realized exists) that gives Missourians the right to fire away at anyone who comes onto their property without any questions asked.
There is nothing wrong with belonging to the National Rifle Association, though I am no big fan of that organization. There is something very wrong when that membership is paid for out of campaign funds.