NRA Takes On Parents Lobby: New Ad Goes After Obama's Daughters

Elspeth Reeve

The National Rifle Association has released an attack ad calling President Obama an "elitist hypocrite" for having armed protection of his daughters but not believing that putting an armed guard in every public school in America is the only way to stop school shootings. "Are the president’s kids more important than yours?" the ad asks. The ad has succeeded in that it is getting a lot of attention, and failed in that it is scaring the straights. Specifically, a core interest group in American politics: parents. 

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At National Journal, Ron Fournier asks if the NRA has gone too far, writing that the ad "is indisputably misleading, and is arguably a dangerous appeal to the base instincts of gun-rights activists." On MSNBC, Joe Scarborough asked, "What’s wrong with these people?" His co-host Mika Brzezinski replied, "They are out of step, out of the mainstream, totally out of sync with what’s going on in our society, and quite frankly after seeing that, I think some of the people who run that thing are sick." Real Clear Politics contributor and Bush family cousin John Ellis tweeted, "The iron-clad rule is you leave the kids out of it. No longer an iron-clad rule. Politics just keeps getting worse."

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The NRA's opponents marveled at the group's ad. "You have to wonder if they've got competent

As was the case with its press conference following the Newtown shooting, this attack line might sound like a new low, but it's not actually new. It's another idea that's so stale it's featured on countless Facebook memes. At right is one of the many we spotted in December.

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If the ad is a sign the gun control debate is entering a new phase in which we'll see more campaign-style tactics, Gibbs seemed to welcome it. "The president has the most exciting campaign apparatus ever built. It's time to turn that loose," Gibbs said. He speculated that the NRA had been telling members of Congress exactly how many new people had joined the NRA in their districts since the Newtown shooting. But Gibb's said Obama has more names: "If the NRA has a list, then Obama for America has a bigger list."

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