There’s an interesting list of numbers on the website, Meet the NRA. Ladd Everitt, communications director of the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, recently called the National Rifle Association a “paper tiger.” With this record, I can see why.
- The National Rifle Association of America Political Victory Fund received a 0.83% return on the $11 million they spent during the 2012 election cycle, the worst performance of any Super PAC that spent over $5 million in the election.
- NRA PACs spent more than $13 million to defeat Pres. Obama alone, all for naught.
- The NRA spent $100,000 in eight Senate races, and lost seven of them.
- Of the 30 House incumbents who lost, 17 were endorsed by the NRA.
Maybe the NRA’s political fortunes are in part behind the rise of the even more radical Gun Owners of America (GOA). GOA refused to endorse Sen. John McCain in 2008 because they thought his record on “gun rights” (yes, apparently guns have rights) was weak. They endorsed Rep. Ron Paul in 2012 because they admired his inability to compromise.
And although Everitt continued to reference the more widely recognized NRA when he appeared recently on the Diane Rehm Show and described the unhinged nature of the new Burt Gummers of the world, he was probably also thinking of the GOA:
We often tell people this not your grandfather’s NRA. And, you know, the modern pro-gun movement today is marked by what we would call insurrectionist ideology, which is this belief that the NRA and others have put forward that there is an individual right under the second amendment to essentially shoot and kill government officials when you personally disagree with democratically enacted laws.