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Under the Gun

Will the NRA be the Republicans’ next cruise ship?

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The GOP-cruise-ship-on-the-Hudson fiasco may have sunk without a trace, but it looks like there’s more controversy looming over the approaching Republican National Convention. A group of local pols is planning to incite a brouhaha over the National Rifle Association’s expected presence at the convention. The group has long been a powerful GOP ally.

The battle lines are being drawn over a new Website, nraleaders.com, that exhaustively compiles the most unsavory quotes ever uttered by the gun group’s board members and top officials. The site—created by the Brady Campaign to End Gun Violence—notes that former rock star and NRA board member Ted Nugent once said on Fox’s Hannity and Colmes that homosexuality is “despicable” and quotes him telling the Detroit Free Press that “apartheid isn’t that cut-and-dry. All men are not created equal.” The site features other, equally astute observations by the leadership of the NRA and details a raft of pro-gun legislation the group is pushing in Congress.

In early February, City Council member Gale Brewer will introduce a resolution (expected to pass) demanding that the Republican National Committee condemn the gun organization’s policy goals and denounce the incendiary quotes. It will even insist that the GOP blast the NRA during the convention itself.

“The resolution is going to say, ‘We don’t want the NRA in NYC,’ ” Brewer says. “We’re planning a press conference. This will be as big an issue as the cruise ship was,” she adds hopefully.

Asked about the site, Mayor Bloomberg’s press secretary, Ed Skyler, said the mayor opposed the NRA’s legislation and called its views “reprehensible.” No one said hosting the convention would be a party.


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