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Monday, November 13, 2017

Sandy Hook Parents, Gun Ban Lobby, Hoping for New Life for Lawsuit

The New York Times has the story here
This week, the families of the victims plan to be in Hartford, listening as lawyers lay out in state Supreme Court their case that the companies that manufactured and sold the military-style assault rifle used by the gunman bear responsibility for the attack in which 26 people, including 20 children, were killed.

They are deploying a novel strategy that the families and their lawyers say could pierce the sweeping shield created by federal law that protects gun companies from litigation and has thwarted countless lawsuits after their weapons were used to commit crimes.
The lower court threw out the lawsuit ruling that the claims fell within the Lawful Commerce in Arms Act that was signed into law in 2005. According to the New York Times, the law does allow exceptions for sale and marketing practices that violate state or federal laws and instances of "negligent entrustment", where a firearms is "carelessly" given or sold to a person posing a high risk of misusing it.  The Times noted that negligent entrustment has been cited with some success in lawsuits against firearms dealers.  The Newtown families are the first to attempt broadening the scope to include a weapon’s manufacturer.  That's kind of like suing Ford or GM because a drunk driver who killed one or more people happened to be driving a vehicle manufactured by them.

Friday, November 10, 2017

What Tuesday's Election Results Mean for Gun Owners

What was immediately clear was we are going to have four more years of the same - really good gun bills being vetoed.  Ralph Northam ran as the most anti-gun candidate for Governor since Mary-Sue Terry in 1993.  What is still undecided is which party will control the House of Delegates.  The Republicans may have a one member majority, or it could be a 50-50 split which would mean a power sharing agreement. Or, Democrats could have a one vote majority depending on recounts results.  Some have said gun owners dealt with a Democrat majority before and got shall-issue concealed carry passed in 1995.  The difference is in 1995 a number of those Democrats were pro-gun.  Today, most all of the Democrat members of the House of Delegates are from northern Virginia or other urban areas and are decidedly anti-rights.

Exit polls showed that a majority of voters came from gun owning households, and a majority - 61% - voted for Ed Gillespie.  What is disconcerting is 37% of those who said they came from gun owning households voted for the most anti-gun candidate Virginia has seen in almost 25 years.  We have our work cut out for us.  Expect an avalanche of anti-gun bills to be introduced in the General Assembly this year.  VSSA will be working hard to defeat them and will work to pass some meaningful pro-rights legislation.  But, expect to play defense like hasn't been done in twenty years.

For more analysis of what the results mean for gun owners, take 10 minutes and watch the below clip from NRATV's Cam and Company.

Friday, November 3, 2017

Final Weekend Before Election Day

Pro-rights volunteers have one last weekend to encourage gun owners and sportsmen to turn out for Tuesday's election.  All three NRA-ILA Campaign Field Offices are holding phone banks and neighborhood canvasses this weekend.  If you live in the Richmond, Fredericksburg, or Tidewater areas, simply click here to find dates and times and to sign up.  If you don't live in one of these areas but want to find out what you can do to help, contact Patrick DeStefano, Senior Campaign Field Representative, NRA-ILA, at (864)680-0399, or by email at  Be sure to let them know you are a VSSA member.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Bloomberg Dumping Additional $700,000 into Virginia Election for Northam, Herring

The Washington Post has the story here:
Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund, the political arm of one of the nation’s largest gun control groups, is pouring an additional $700,000 into Virginia elections.

The organization announced Monday it would donate $400,000 to Democratic gubernatorial candidate Ralph Northam and $300,000 to Democratic Attorney General Mark Herring’s re-election bid in the final two weeks before election day.

That comes on top of an earlier $1 million dollar commitment from the organization bankrolled by former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. 
The article went on to remind us that Northam wants to ban so-called "assault weapons" and standard capacity (referred to by the gun ban lobby as "high-capacity") magazines. Northam also wants so-called "universal" background checks and to reinstate one-gun-a-month.

Also noted in the article is that Everytown is targeting minorities in the hope of increasing turnout for the gun ban candidates:
“African-American turnout will be crucial on Nov. 7 -- and we want to make sure black voters know what the stakes are in this race,” said Brynne Craig, an Everytown strategist. “Ed Gillespie walks in lock step with the NRA and his policies will make black communities less safe in the Commonwealth.”
It's actually safety concerns that prompt minorities, especially minority women, to buy firearms for self-defense, like this Chicago Tribune article notes:
It's why Chicago resident Chip Eberhart, a minority, trains others to use firearms for self-defense.

There is two weeks before election day.  Money doesn't win elections, votes win elections.  It is up to use to contact every gun owner we know and encourage them to vote on November 7th.

Herring Joins 16 Other State AGs in Letter Opposing National Carry Reciprocity

Democrat State Attorney Generals from 17 states have signed on to a letter to Congress opposing National Carry Reciprocity.  Virginia's Mark Herring is one of the 17 to sign the letter.  From the Seattle Times:
The top prosecutors from states including New York, Pennsylvania, Iowa and California sent a letter to congressional leaders in both parties on Sunday warning that federal reciprocity proposals being debated on Capitol Hill “will lead to the death of police officers and civilians, the proliferation of gun traffickers, and acts of terrorism and other mass violence.”
Never mind that concealed carry permit holders are some of the most law abiding people in the nation, even more law abiding that police officers according to the Crime Prevention Research Center. But facts don't matter to the gun ban crowd.  If Mark Herring is re-elected Attorney General of Virginia, and Ralph Northam is elected Governor, it is very likely that Herring may once again try and attack Virginia's reciprocity agreements with other states.  That's why it's important to do all we can to defeat Northam, Justin Fairfax, and Mark Herring on November 7th.  You can find NRA-ILA campaign GOTV events by clicking here or contact one of the Campaign Field Representatives below:

Richmond Region
Patrick DeStefano
Phone: 864-680-0399
Office Address:
8132 Forest Hill Ave Suite B
Richmond, VA 23235

Fredericksburg Region
Britton Ross
Phone: 919-902-1787
Office Address:
709 Westwood Office Park
Fredericksburg, VA 22401

Norfolk/Virginia Beach Region
Sean Nottoli
Phone: 803-960-5487

Friday, October 20, 2017

Poll Shows Gillespie, Northam Deadlocked Ahead of Election

Politico has the story here.  Key points from the poll according to Politico are:
Virginia voters are sharply divided along geographic lines, the Monmouth poll shows. Northam leads in Northern Virginia — defined as Arlington, Fairfax, Loudoun and Prince William counties, along with the independent cities contained therein — by a 2-to-1 margin, 64 percent to 32 percent. But farther west, in broad expanses of the commonwealth west of Interstate 95, Gillespie leads by a nearly identical margin, 64 percent to 31 percent.
I had the opportunity to speak with NRATV's Cam Edwards on Wednesday about the article. Northam has pledged to be the most anti-gun governor the state has ever seen. Democrats are hoping to regain control of the House as well so they can redistrict the state to their liking after the 2020 Census. I told Cam that turnout will make the difference in this off-year election.

You still have time to get involved in this year's campaign. Simply contact the NRA-ILA Campaign Field Representative nearest you to find out how you can help. Live in another area of Virginia that doesn't have a CFR? Just contact one of the names below and they will let you know how you can make calls from your home to gun owners to help get out the vote on November 7th.

Britton Ross

Patrick DeStefano

Virginia Beach Area
Sean Nottoli

New Lynchburg Range Set for Grand Opening Saturday

Roanoke indoor range and firearms retailer SafeSide Tactical will officially open their new location in Lynchburg on Saturday. The new indoor, state-of-the-art shooting range located in what was originally a 1940s lumber processing mill is in its "soft opening" now.  The range will offer firearm safety and training courses, conference spaces, retail space and 22 shooting lanes.

Co-owner Mitch Tyler told the Lynchburg News & Advance: “It’s a growing interest. I was told by the range designers that more ranges will open this year [2017] across the country than Starbucks.”

According to the News & Advance, SafeSide serves three types of customers: members of law enforcement, first-time gun buyers and regular shooters.
“First-time gun buyers don’t want to go into an old school gun shop,” he said. “We present a facility like this, for someone who’s not a gun person can still feel comfortable. They go from never holding a gun to making an educated decision on what gun to buy. We built the facility to cater to them.”
Tyler was spoke with NRATV's Cam and Company on Thursday about the new range and Saturday's Grand Opening.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Campaign 2017 Volunteer Opportunities Near Richmond

There is less than a month till Election Day and we need to do our part to protect our Second Amendment Rights. On November 7th, Virginians will have the opportunity to make their voice heard at polling locations across Virginia.

VSSA is assisting NRA-ILA to get the word out about volunteer opportunities for gun owners.  Volunteers are helping every day of the week and each Saturday is the NRA Day of Action! RSVP now or stop by the Richmond NRA-ILA Field Office every Saturday to get involved.

Every Saturday Through November 4th 10am-2pm
NRA-ILA Richmond Field Office
8132 Forest Hill Avenue
Richmond, VA 23235

Phone banking and door knocking to turn out the pro-gun vote is going on continually. With your help, we can contact that many more voters; and secure our victory in November!

If you are interested at all in any of the volunteering opportunities, please contact Patrick DeStefano directly and let him know the days you are interested, otherwise visit the Richmond NRA-ILA Field Office.

Volunteers who are not near the Richmond, Fredericksburg, or Tidewater Field Offices are welcome to make phone calls online in support of pro-gun candidates at your convenience. Simply contact Patrick and let him know of your interest. You can contact him by phone at (864)680-0399 or email at

Monday, October 16, 2017

Democrat Candidates Protest at NRA

We all know that Ralph Northam and his Democratic ticket mates support gun rationing as well as gun & magazine bans.  This weekend, they were protesting with local gun ban activists outside NRA Headquarters.

If anyone doubted the animosity toward our gun rights by Northam, Fairfax and Herring, lending their active support to a gun control demonstration against NRA clearly shows that all of them have earned their NRA-PVF “F” ratings!

If we want to make sure we don't have four more years of good firearm rights legislation dying on the desk of the Governor, we need your activism in the remaining weeks leading up to Election Day—November 7.

Never has it been clearer about the importance of electing Ed Gillespie as Governor, Jill Vogel as Lt. Governor and John Adams as Attorney General.

To ensure gun owners and Second Amendment supporters are fully engaged in grassroots efforts around Virginia, NRA-ILA deployed Campaign Field Representatives (CFRs) months ago. CFRs have been recruiting volunteers, making calls, knocking doors, and attending events…all with the goal of launching a massive Get Out The Vote campaign in support pro-rights candidates.

Please contact the CFR nearest you to volunteer!

Britton Ross

Patrick DeStefano

Virginia Beach Area
Sean Nottoli

Please take a few hours of your time between now and Election Day to help preserve your Second Amendment rights! Contact your CFR TODAY!  If you don't live near one of these locations, simply call one of the CFRs and they can help get you set up to make phone calls from home.

For more information on candidates running in Virginia this year, visit

The Federalist: Bipartisan Bump Stock Bill Would Ban All Semi-Automatic Rifles

As was posted last week, Diane Feinstein's bill purportedly banning "bump stocks" would ban more than that single firearm accessory.  Sean Davis wrote at The Federalist that the "bipartisan" House version of the bill, which is virtually identical to the Feinstein bill, goes a lot further than just banning "bump stocks."
The legislation, which was drafted by Rep. Carlos Curbelo, a Florida Republican, never bans bump stocks by name. Instead, the proposal bans any person from possessing or making any part that could be used to increase the rate of fire in any semi-automatic rifle. The lead co-sponsor on the gun control bill is Rep. Seth Moulton, a Massachusetts Democrat and U.S. Marines veteran who completed four tours of duty in Iraq.

“It shall be unlawful for any person … to manufacture, possess, or transfer any part or combination of parts that is designed to increase the rate of fire of a semi-automatic rifle,” the bill states. At no point does the proposed legislation specify a base rate of fire against which any illegal increases would be judged, a potentially fatal flaw in the bill’s drafting. As a result, the proposal arguably institutes a federal ban on any and all parts that would allow the gun to fire at all, since the mere ability to fire a semi-automatic weapon by definition increases its rate of fire from zero.

The design of semi-automatic weapons uses the recoil of the weapon generated by the gas explosion in the chamber when a round is fired to automatically chamber a new round, and prepare the weapon to be fired again. Because of this, any parts used in that process would likely be subject to the federal ban proposed in the Curbelo/Moulton bill, since they serve to increase the rate of fire of a semi-automatic weapon. Gas tubes, gas blocks, buffer springs, magazines, charging handles, ejectors and extractors, and even triggers themselves could potentially be banned under the bipartisan bump stock ban language proposed by Curbelo and Moulton.
Davis notes that the proposal also does not contain any grandfather provisions for existing gun owners or manufacturers, and fails to provide any means by which gun owners and manufacturers could turn in their weapons to federal authorities to avoid running afoul of the bill’s effective ban on the possession of any semi-automatic firearms or parts. As Sebastian at Shall Not Be Questioned noted in the above linked article, this is what happens when you have badly drafted legislation.

Davis appeared on NRATV's Cam and Company on Friday to discuss his article.

Are Millennials Moving Rightward on Guns?

That's the question that Politico asked in this article last week.  Looking at recent Pew Research data, those ages 18-29 are least likely to support a ban on so-called "assault weapons".
Polling in gun politics is notoriously murky—much lies in the crafting of the question—but demographers have consistently reported a conservative streak in millennial attitudes on guns. Respondents aged 18-29 are the least likely in the country to support a renewed ban on assault weapons, at 49 percent, a fact that has helped drive nationwide support down to a record low. Pew’s data suggest that those falling in the youngest age range have dropped the furthest in support for “gun control” since 2000 (when the alternative is presented as “gun rights”). And when the question concerns the National Rifle Association’s top legislative priority, concealed carry, millennials appear to lead the country. According to Gallup’s version of the question in 2004, the notion that concealed guns made for safer spaces polled at 25 percent; 11 years later, it registered at 55 percent nationally. The greatest support came from those ages 18-29, at 66 percent, a full 10 points greater than the next highest scoring demographic.
While the same group is the most favorable to socialism, when it comes to the issue of guns, it remains one of the few arenas in which a younger generation’s views are not moving leftward. For the gun ban crowd which seems to think their time will come as the gun owning population gets older and dies off, "the data can disappoint".   Later in the article however the writer notes that while this segment of the population may not be as supportive of gun control as other demographic groups, they also are not monolithic.  They tend to support concealed carry but are not absolutists, which is where the writer gives the gun ban lobby hope:
Speaking with Malden, I was struck by the sense that I was staring into the eyes of the gun control movement’s best opportunity: White, gun-owning males disillusioned by the NRA. This was the next wave of undecided citizens, still making up their minds about guns. Roper told me he thinks the tens of millions of gun owners who lie beyond the NRA’s reach—like him—are the fulcrum in the gun debate. Where will they go? The NRA? Or someplace else?

“A lot of people are waiting,” Roper said, speaking of young gun owners. “A whole lot.”