April 16, 2008

The Fake "Gun Rights Group" Supporting Obama

ABC News reports that Barack Obama has collected the endorsement of a guns rights group, the American Hunters and Shooters Association:

"Sen. Obama will be a strong voice an unabashed voice for America's hunters and shooters and it is with great pleasure that we endorse his candidacy," President of the Association Ray Schoenke said, citing Obama's commitment to the traditions of gun ownership.

Schoenke said they had reached out to the Obama campaign several weeks ago to offer their support but the announcement wasn't made public until today. Schoenke added that the timing amid the controversy was important.

"We believe recent attacks on Sen. Obama's stand on the 2nd amendment and his commitment to the hunting and shooting heritages are unfair."

Actually, it is Obama's record on firearms that is unfair to Americans, but don't expect Ray Schoenke to know much about gun rights, even if the Daily Kos diarist is the President of the American Hunters and Shooters Association (AHSA).

Schoenke, a failed Democratic candidate for governor of Maryland, has donated thousands to Handgun Control, Inc, a virulent anti-gun organization that was the forerunner of Brady Campaign To Prevent Gun Violence. He has donated tens of thousands more to anti-gun Democratic politicians including Ted Kennedy.

AHSA executive director Robert Ricker has testified as a paid witness against the gun industry and consults for several anti-gun groups, and John Rosenthal, President of the AHSA Foundation, is a former member of Sarah Brady's Handgun Control, Inc, and is leader of Stop Handgun Violence, a Massachusetts anti-gun group that has contributed to that state's intolerant anti-gun guns.

Just as Obama's record of claiming he is in favor of the Second Amendment even as he pushes for gun ban is dishonest, so is this endorsement from a trojan horse gun control organization masquerading as a group that respects American's rights to life and liberty.

Update: SayUncle examined this group earlier this year in greater detail.

Posted by Confederate Yankee at April 16, 2008 04:05 PM

The NRA is the only player of substance here. Have they said anything about Obama?

Posted by: mytralman at April 16, 2008 04:39 PM

The SAF (Second Amendment Foundation) is even better than the NRA. The NRA has lagged from time to time and the SAF is a more hardline organization.
The NRA will give Obama an F grade. But they will give incumbents the nod even if the rival is better on the Second than the incumbent.

Posted by: JP at April 16, 2008 05:00 PM

I should clarify.
The NRA favors an incumbent who has voted "favorably" in the past over an "unknown" challenger.
Rural Dem from Texas who doesn't go for the clinton bans but may favor some controls (say an A- rating) gets the "Vote For" nod over a CCW holder Republican who has no "real" record of votes on gun issues(an A rate).

Posted by: JP at April 16, 2008 05:13 PM

The American Hunters and Shooters Association also supports the following rights:

The right to keep and garnish with arugula.

The right to use Swiss Cheese on steak n cheese subs shall not be infringed.

A well extended pinky finger, necessary to secure holding of a tea cup, shall not be infringed.

Posted by: SnObama at April 16, 2008 06:15 PM

Their website,, was registered less than three years ago and their WHOIS record doesn't actually list any contacts, as a legitimate organization presumably would--all of their contact fields are listed as "Domains by Proxy, Inc."

Compare with, say, registered in 1993, all their contact information is for people within the organization.

Posted by: Matt at April 16, 2008 06:46 PM

How about being more specific franglo. I would love to hear the reasons why you feel this un-named silver-spoon heir is considered elitist. Considering getting a gun usually requires something like a drivers license, your comment makes no sense. Weird how all with all the guns I own, not a single one has ever poked a hole in any person. Lots of cans, targets, some animals, but no people. Is there another product that is misused in such quantity as guns are, according to you? What minuscule percentage of guns manufactured have poked a hole in a person. Ruby Ridge mindset? Why don't you explain what you think you mean by that? Do you know what Ruby Ridge was actually about? Not the sharpest tool in the drawer are you? Tool, yes. Sharp, no.

Posted by: buzz at April 16, 2008 06:47 PM

I see our issues as complementary to theirs," Paul Helmke, president of the Brady Campaign, says about Schoenke's association. "They're a positive group."


Posted by: Matt at April 16, 2008 06:53 PM

Is there anything real about Obama's image, or is it all made up to convince us he is somone who he's not?

Of course it's all made up - he's a politician, isn't he?

Anyone who runs for an office should be disqualified posthaste. I'm sure we could do better with 'the first hundred names from the Boston phone book'.

OK, maybe not Boston - how about Waycross, GA? Tupelo, MS? Lebanon, TN? Phenix City, AL? (no, I didn't misspell it). OK, Van Horn, TX - that's my last offer - although the first hundred names may well overlap the last hundred names there, from what I hear.

Listen, trust NO POLITICIAN with your rights - remember, they (rights) don't come from the government, therefore the government can't take them away.

Unless you help. Don't help.

Posted by: bt at April 16, 2008 07:01 PM

As he is Unable to converse as an adult without profanity, franglo's comments have been removed.

Posted by: Confederate Yankee at April 16, 2008 07:03 PM

Matt, Domains by Proxy, Inc. is listed when owners of a domain name purchase a private listing. This can be done to hide the owner's identity certainly but it's also done to prevent spam bots and junk mail proprietors from scrounging contact info and is done quite frequently.

Posted by: tom at April 16, 2008 07:16 PM

JP commented that the NRA will endorse an incumbent with an "A-" or so rating over a challenger who might be a stronger Second Amendment supporter. This position actually makes considerable sense. If a legislator goes out on a limb to support the pro-2A position, particularly if he's in a swing district or is facing party pressure to vote the other way, and then is "rewarded" at re-election time by the NRA endorsing his opponent, then you'll never see another pro-2A vote from a centrist legislator or a person in a swing district. There will never be a Congress full of members with "A+" ratings. We need the votes of the centrists, and cannot punish them when they go out of their way our way.

Posted by: Helen at April 16, 2008 08:03 PM

Matt: Since the AHSA doesn't seem to have been founded until 2005, it's no surprise that their web site has been registered for less than three years.

Posted by: Joshua at April 16, 2008 09:41 PM

The Amerikanski Huntington and Shooters-Hooters are a well documented astroturf group who are "pro-gun" in every respect as far as pro gun-control goes. They've never met a regulation that's not "reasonable," from complete scary EBR (Evil Black Rifle) bans, to semi-auto bans (including Grandpa's old A-5 shotgun), to sniper rifle bans (anything with a scope), to waiting period and monthly limitations - they embrace the whole gamut of guns (regulations).

Posted by: DirtCrashr at April 17, 2008 11:33 AM

Can't these anti-Constitutional feebs EVER just play a damn straight line? This would be terrifying if it weren't unraveling before our eyes. Global warming is another good example. Just crap they make up....

Posted by: megapotamus at April 17, 2008 12:35 PM