“Gun Owners of America, with its war chest, membership and lobbying strength dwarfed by the National Rifle Association, is emerging as an influential force as a series of gun control measures heads to the Senate floor.” - New York Times, April 4, 2013
The Senate was supposed to be taking up gun control next week. But now it looks like the outpouring of grassroots opposition from GOA activists has forced Harry Reid to push back his plans for at least a week.
Said the New York Times, “The group [GOA] has already been successful in both freezing senators, particularly Republicans, who have appeared to be on the fence about supporting bills to expand background checks and [has been] empowering those who have a strong gun rights background.”
The article cited GOA’s work in bolstering the resolve of several Senators, but especially that of Tom Coburn of Oklahoma who has been frequently wooed by anti-gun Senator Chuck Schumer.
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To date, no compromise has been reached. And that means Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid just doesn’t have the votes yet.
GOA has still been lobbying the House, even while we’ve been asking you to mostly focus your efforts on the Senate. To that end, MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell asked Rep. Peter King yesterday about the influence GOA is having in the House.
“The New York Times has a report on the Gun Owners of America,” Andrea Mitchell asked. “What are members saying about the impact of lobbying groups such as them [GOA]?”
King, who is, ironically, F-rated with GOA, said that, “Larry Pratt with the Gun Owners of America is effective. I don’t deal with them myself, but the fact is, they are effective.”
As we noted above, the New York Times quoted Senate aides on Tuesday as saying that “gun issues would probably slip to the week of April 15 - a setback considering that Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, the majority leaders, had pledged that it would be the first issue to come up when Congress returns from spring recess next week.”
We’ll let you know what’s happening next week. But for now, enjoy your weekend knowing that Reid doesn’t yet have the votes.