Do anti-gun legislators deserve support simply because they're Republican?

By Chad D. Baus & Ken Hanson

Buckeye Firearms Association has always described itself as a non-partisan political action committee. Yet in recent days, PAC Chairman Jim Irvine has been in conversation with a reader who takes exception to the endorsement of Democrats. (For an excellent article on the NRA's endorsement of Democrats in national races, click here)

In a bit of ironic timing, as this conversation was going on, another Buckeye Firearms Association volunteer was having her own conversation with just the type of Republican this PAC could never endorse.

Volunteer Tiffany Caron lives in Ohio's Senate District 3. Caron's November ballot will present a choice between Republican incumbent David Goodman and Democrat challenger and Buckeye Firearms Association endorsee Emily Kreider. To gain a better understanding of the differences between the two candidates, Caron wrote Senator Goodman about his decision to vote against Ohio's concealed carry law, HB12. In his response, Goodman said, in part:

    In your e-mail, you asked me why I voted against the legislation (H.B. 12) that allows certain Ohio citizens to carry concealed weapons in public. Let me begin by saying that I do support law-abiding citizens' right to own handguns. However, I voted against the bill out of concern for safety in our community.

    Recognizing that reasonable people still disagree about whether concealed carry laws deter crime, I am concerned about individuals who do not have proper training using handguns during times of crisis. Rather, I believe we need to give law enforcement officers the tools they need to fight crime and respond quickly when a crime or crisis occurs. That is why I have focused my efforts as your State Senator to reducing crime by helping law enforcement get necessary resources to respond quickly and by strengthening our laws to protect families.

What makes this statement even more incredulously disconnected from reality than the plain reading of his own words is that Goodman sent this email to a constituent who, after having been through the most training required of a citizen by any state to get her CHL, had been disarmed in a state-mandated victim zone during a heinous murder. This mandatory disarmament was convenient for the sociopath who crossed paths with Tiffany Caron and her husband Roger that night, as it insured the bad guy was the only one who was armed. The Carons had to stand by and watch helplessly as a crazed madman gunned down innocent civilians, with a police officer standing not 50 yards away, ready to "respond quickly."

No amount of super-heroic "focusing of efforts" is going to be more effective than having a police officer literally seconds away from a mass murderer engaged in the act, yet in Goodman's view this is the only "reasonable" approach to take: make sure the police get there as quickly as possible after the bodies have fallen. Unfortunately, he backs up his failed philosophy with his vote.

Senator Goodman voted against legislation recognizing Ohioans' Constitutional and human right to bear arms for self-defense. He does not trust law-abiding citizens enough to allow them the means to protect themselves when attacked while continuing to trust a State Highway Patrol that repeatedly demonstrates they are as fallible as the rest of us mere mortals (see here and here and here and here for a few examples). He does not believe that 12 hours of mandatory training, the most required by any state, is enough for him to consent to you defending your family while in public. His focus is instead on making sure the police come quickly AFTER one of his constituents is raped, or worse.

Keep Goodman's position in mind as you contrast it with the following account:

    "When my girls were pre-school age, my family was shot at by a complete stranger--a criminal. We were on our way home from visiting family and were stopped at a light in our car.

    Fortunately, no one was physically hurt but we will never forget that experience. The law did not protect
    us. Law enforcement could not protect us.

The person who had this experience is none other than Emily Kreider , Sen. Goodman's Democratic challenger.

"I believe in freedom, Krieder told Buckeye Firearms Association recently. "I want the freedom to choose whether or not I carry a concealed weapon. I know the difference between a law abiding citizen and a criminal. Criminals don't care about the law. My personal experience tells me that criminals don't care about gun laws."

"So, here's the bottom line," she continued. "Laws infringing on our 2nd Amendment rights are an assault on freedom and privacy. They only serve to restrict the freedom and self-protection of law abiding citizens. I will stand up for our constitutional rights. I support protecting the privacy of concealed carry license holders and as a state senator I will work against any legislation that restricts the right of law abiding citizens to carry a gun."

Do Republicans like David Goodman deserve an endorsement from pro-gun groups over challengers like Emily Krieder simply because of their party affiliation or incumbent status? Of course not! If you put your gun rights among your first priorities when voting, Senator Goodman and those like him don't deserve your support either.

Voting records seldom lie. David Goodman had the chance to vote for your gun rights and instead abandoned you - both on HB12, which became Ohio's concealed carry law, and on HB274, which was a previous attempt to restore the right to bear arms for self-defense. In fact, even though he is airing non-stop attack ads against his challenger for not voting in several elections, Senator Goodman, himself a member of the Senate Committee which heard testimony for HB12, did not even bother to attend many of the committee hearings before voting against your gun rights on the Senate floor.

It is simply reprehensible for someone who has abandoned his own civic obligations AFTER BEING ELECTED AND CHARGED WITH THAT PUBLIC TRUST to attack someone who could not make it to the ballot box on Election Day. And should it be any surprise if, after viewing months of negative TV ads like Goodman’s, some Ohio voters find little motivatation to go to the polls and vote?

The contest in Senate District 3 highlights why it is important for each responsible pro-gun voter in Ohio to get to know the candidates, rather than simply voting straight ticket for one party, or blindly following any one groups' endorsement list. Even though certain other pro-gun groups have inexplicably endorsed the incumbent anti-gun Senator, we stand by our endorsement of Democrat challenger Emily Kreider in Senate District 3, and we would like your help in adding her to the pro-gun votes we can count on in the Senate.

If you have not yet made your $50/person ($100/couple) donation to a political candidate (remember you get ALL your money back in your tax refund check) and you want Ohio's firearms laws fixed, Emily Kreider would be an excellent choice for your donation. Send a note with your donation thanking her for supporting your firearms rights. We have a strong friend in Emily Kreider - now we need your help to make our friend a State Senator.
Click here to make a contribution to Emily Kreider's campaign for Ohio Senate, or to get involved in her campaign.

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