I am becoming more and more convinced that Mitt Romney’s support for gun control will be his third strike. To many Republican base voters, especially in rural areas, strong support for the Second Amendment is even more of a cultural/political signal than being pro-life.
Now comes word that in addition to espousing pro-gun control positions while running for the US Senate, Mitt Romney is suspiciously late to the National Rifle Association cause, from the Globe.
Mitt Romney, who has touted his support of gun owners since launching his presidential campaign, yesterday acknowledged he did not become a member of the National Rifle Association until last August, campaign officials said.
A former advocate of gun control, Romney during his 1994 run for the US Senate backed measures the gun-rights group opposed, such as a five-day waiting period on gun sales and a ban on certain assault weapons.
When challenged on his sincerity of his recent membership his spokesman, Kevin Madden dodged:
Asked why Romney joined only a few months before declaring his candidacy, Madden said: “I would argue not many Americans care when you join, but why you join, and I think I’ve made that clear.”
There Romney and his campaign are wrong, a fifty-something man joining the NRA as he begins his Presidential campaign is an obvious political sop. It makes Romney look like a calculating effete poseur, which is what he is. And that’s not going to play well with the real gun advocates.
P.S.- I wonder what happened to Eric Fernstrom, Romney’s former spokesman, I miss his slash and lie style. I know he isn’t too busy with the Brookline Housing Authority.