Buckeye Firearms Association announces 2010 general election grades and endorsements

by Jim Irvine

Buckeye Firearms Association is pleased to announce our 2010 general election endorsements.

The biggest change you will note this year is that grades have been given to all candidates.* This is response to feedback from our supporters and candidates. We now list every candidate with a letter grade, or a "??" if we do not know anything about them. While it is possible for a "??" -graded candidate to be a supporter of your Second Amendment rights, most supporters know us and are known by us. Be careful.

What the grades mean:

A+ = a strong supporter who has done more than vote with us every time. They are candidates that have answered a call to do specific work to improve our laws. We have kept the A+ rating very rare so you can identify the best of the best.

A = a candidate who supports what we have done and what we have left to do.

B = a candidate who agrees with most of what we are doing and most of what we hope to accomplish in the upcoming legislative session.

C = a candidate who has been helpful with some issues but has been against us on others. Oftentimes they simply need education to help them understand our issue, but sometimes they have concerns that we can not address without unduly burdening the law-abiding gun owner.

D = someone who generally votes against us, but is not necessarily hostile towards our rights.

F = someone who has a terrible voting record, is openly hostile toward our rights, and/ or has worked or helped others to restrict our rights.

?? = Someone who did not return a candidate survey, has no voting record, and for whom we could not find any pertinent information relating to firearms rights.

We have several statewide races where all Ohio voters can choose between a strong supporter and a proven anti-gun candidate. Rob Portman (R), Richard Cordray (D), Jon Husted (R) and Josh Mandel (R) all present clear choices for voters who value their Second Amendment rights.

Ted Strickland (D) and Dave Yost (R) are both strong supporters of your rights. While it would be inaccurate to call either of their opponents "anti-gun," they both face candidates with a checkered past. Both Strickland and Yost have proven both publicly and behind the scenes that they understand your rights, and how to use their political clout to fight for you. They are not afraid to get their hands dirty and work with others who may have concerns. They help us educate persons less familiar with our issue, and explain to them on a personal level why they should support our efforts.

It has been noted by many that Governor Strickland has picked yet another anti-gun running mate, while John Kasich's pick for lieutenant governor, Mary Taylor, has a record of protecting our Second Amendment rights. We agree with that assessment. However, we also note that governors are strong individuals who will make decisions based on what they believe, not based on what someone else believes. Governor Strickland assured us four years ago that he would set the policy for his administration on Second Amendment issues and, even with the anti-gun crusading Lee Fisher as lieutenant governor, he has been true to his word. We have every reason to believe the same will hold true for his second term.

There are pro- and anti-gun people in both parties. If we disqualified candidates because "they supported this anti-gun candidate," there would be no candidates left to endorse. That is not an overstatement or oversimplification - it's the simple truth. (Further explanation of the methodology of our endorsement system is available here and here.)

We will continue to publish stories related to the elections and the choices facing voters in the days ahead. We highly recommend that you consider donating either time, money, or both to at least one of our endorsed candidates. Our endorsement is worthless unless you take action to support our candidates. When gun owners and freedom lovers respond with donations and volunteer to help our candidates, we can accomplish the unthinkable.

After decades with no progress, a "shall issue" concealed carry law, statewide preemption, and Governor veto override, "Castle Doctrine" legislation, and many other improvements have been made because gun owner got involved. Our enemies have awakened and tough battles lie ahead, but gun owners have the power this year to protect and restore our rights to levels not enjoyed in years. Voting is no longer enough - activism is needed to win in November.

Thank you for joining us in support of our endorsed candidates.

Jim Irvine is the Buckeye Firearms Association Chairman.

*Grades were not issued for the Ohio Supreme Court Justice races. Additionally, none of the third party candidates who submitted surveys met our candidate selection criterion.

Buckeye Firearms Association endorsements can be found on our website's Ohio Voter Guide, or click on the links below:

Ohio Statewide 2010

Ohio House 2010

Ohio Senate 2010

U.S. House 2010

On the ballot this year for every Ohio voter:

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Buckeye Firearms Association is a grassroots organization dedicated to defending and advancing the right of citizens to own and use firearms for all legal activities, including self-defense, hunting, competition, and recreation. Read more.