” Gun Owners of America has far fewer members and much less money than the better-known NRA, but the group is emerging as an influential voice in Washington.
A gun rights group working feverishly to prevent the passage of several gun control bills in Congress has apparently caught the ear of several lawmakers. No, it’s not the National Rifle Association.
Gun Owners of America, a lobbying organization that’s been around since 1975, doesn’t get nearly as much media attention as the larger, better-funded and better-known NRA, but its voice is increasingly being heard on Capitol Hill.
Gun Owners of America’s mission is to “preserve and defend the Second Amendment rights of gun owners.” It has about 300,000 dues-paying members, compared with 5 million for the NRA. The group spent $1.3 million last year to lobby Congress, while the NRA spent nearly $3 million, according to the Times.
Pratt told MSN News his group is “totally separate” from, and often at odds with, the NRA.
GOA makes it a point to differentiate itself from the larger NRA. Pratt told the Times that part of the group’s mission is to stay on top of the NRA “when we don’t think they’ve gone far enough.”
Ron Paul, the libertarian congressman from Texas, has called the GOA “the only no-compromise gun lobby in America.”
Pratt told MSN News: “The reason we why we oppose the background checks, the measure currently at the top of the wish list of other side, is that all evidence points to it becoming a national gun registry.”
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