Richard Blumenthal gun control civil rights
Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
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This morning, the Daily Beast published a breathless story exposing the shocking — SHOCKING! — hypocrisy of the National Shooting Sports Foundation. Connecticut Senator Dick Blumenthal sent the NSSF a letter Friday afternoon, accusing the trade association of amassing a secret database — a registry, if you will — of gun owner information including personal information and the guns they own.

There’s only one problem. That’s not what happened.

Da Nang Dick leaked his letter to the Daily Beast last week in a naked attempt at an October Surprise, trying discredit them in the run-up to the election. As the Beast wrote . . .

Blumenthal’s letter cites damning details that were exposed when Cambridge Analytica emails were leaked two years ago but received little attention at the time.

“The claim by Cambridge Analytica that NSSF maintains and leverages a database, akin to a registry, of gun owners’ personal information should come as a surprise to millions of law abiding gun owners, many of whom, undoubtedly, would never have consented for firearms manufacturers or retailers to retain, share, and expose their sensitive personal data for political purposes,” Blumenthal wrote.

The claim is that the NSSF hoovers up warranty card registration data from its member companies on millions of gun purchases and they then heartlessly use this ill-gotten information to campaign against good, hard-working, pure-hearted, clean-minded Gunsense™ candidates who are only working for more Gun Safety® laws to save the lives of innocent children.

The Daily Beast compounds the smear by linking the evil NSSF with the nefarious Cambridge Analyitica, the company that worked with the Trump campaign in 2016 and was the subject of much handwringing and wild claims.

The Beast claims this is all jaw-droppingly hypocritical because the NSSF’s Larry Keane had just decried privately maintained registries of gun owner information.

Larry Keane, who is also NSSF’s top in-house lawyer, appeared on The Reload podcast on Sept. 19 to discuss congressional bills proposed by Democrats that would give the feds a closer look at gun purchases—and possibly pressure banks to identify exactly what firearms, ammunition, and related gear end up on the receipt.

Keane, speaking to independent firearms journalist Stephen Gutowski, described the measure as “​​just fraught with opportunities for abuse.”

“You have an invasion of privacy,” he said, going on to detail how the existence of any database—in anyone’s hands—could be seized by government agents.

“It’s given to law enforcement or ATF and then all of a sudden law enforcement shows up at your door and says let’s see what you purchased… you have privacy issues wrapped around the exercise of a fundamental constitutional right. It’s very, very troubling,” he said. “They want to see what you’re buying so they can stop you from buying it.”

Oh. My. God. Thank GOODNESS we have someone with the integrity and civic-mindedness of Senator Blumenthal to watch out for gun owners’ privacy, not to mention the sanctity of the federal government’s ban on compiling a firearm registry. What would we do without him?!?

TTAG spoke to an individual with direct knowledge of what really happened here, though, and — surprise! — it isn’t even close to the wild allegations of the assiduously anti-gun Connecticut Senator or the hoplophobic jernalizmists at the Daily Beast.

The NSSF, as you probably are aware, runs a program called Gunvote which encourages voters to support and elect candidates who actually support and defend the Second Amendment. They contract with a company called FC-3 to produce the communications and send out the mailings.

FC-3, in turn, contracted with Cambridge Analytica until 2016 (Cambridge is no longer in business). Cambridge did standard data mining of public information to identify target voters for the Gunvote mailings.

In other words, the Gunvote campaign used exactly the same kind of public information and messaging techniques as virtually every other political campaign in America.

Even if Blumenthal’s allegations were true, this would have been a pretty poor way of compiling a gun owner registry. Only a small percentage of gun buyers return warranty registration cards (have you ever sent one in?) Such a program would only capture a tiny fraction of Americans who own firearms.

We understand that in the past, a couple of the NSSF’s member companies sent warranty cards into the NSSF. The NSSF digitized the customer demographic information, sent it to FC-3, and returned the cards to the companies. That, however, is no longer happening.

In other words, Blumenthal, who’s long been one of the most anti-gun voices in Congress, has concocted a bogus allegation against the NSSF and publicized it a month before the election to try to hamstring the NSSF’s Gunvote campaign and discredit the industry as millions of new gun owners prepare to vote.

So…exactly what you’d expect from a desperate pol who sees things trending against him and hates the fact that the gun industry’s primary representative is based in his own state.

As early voting has already begun in some areas, don’t look for Blumenthal’s ploy to have much of an effect on turnout or support for Second Amendment-friendly candidates. Oh, and don’ forget to #gunvote.

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  1. Blumenthal has long been one of the biggest POS in the US Senate. A real indictment of the morons, living or dead, who vote in the state of Conn.

  2. “Warranty Card Registration Data”?! lol

    That sounds more like something a willing gun owner agrees with and submits to on purpose. If you submit to things that connect your guns serial numbers to you then this becomes a non issue. It’s bad enough that this has to be done through the 4473 but why register your gun when you don’t have to and then complain when you find out it’s registered? Rather than everyone always blaming everyone else, it might be time for people to just be responsible for themselves for a change. The NSSF and whatever their policies, operating procedures, and methods may be is meaningless compared to my job to take care of me.

    October Surprise? No. It might be October but if you are surprised at this ridiculousness then you are part of the problem.

  3. Lies, brainwashing….that is all the left has….and they use those tools effectively.

    My wife and I were in Wegman’s yesterday. I was wearing my Stetson with a ‘Trump Won’ button and an InfoWars t-shirt. Some guy, with two little children in tow (the oldest of which was maybe 8 years) walked by and called me an ‘a$$hole’. Twice.

    I complimented him on being such a nice guy.

    He then released a stream of cussing and swearing inter-spaced with words like ‘fascist’ and ‘Nazi’.

    I then complimented him on setting a good example for his children.

    Now, he really became agitated, yelling, that he is showing them how to confront and fight fascists. He moved aggressively toward me a couple of times, but, then seemed to remember his children were at his side.

    He was thin, 40-ish, and about 40 lbs. smaller than me. I am 220 and mostly muscle (I could drop 15 lbs). A kinetic confrontation would not have gone well for him and would have severely traumatized his children, so, I made sure there was always a shopping cart between us.

    He was drawing an audience of shoppers who were looking upset and and concerned.

    So, I smiled, told him to enjoy his day, smiled at everyone else, shrugged, and moved on.

    We ran into him a couple of more times as we moved through the aisles. Each time he cussed loudly at me and called me a fascist. I smiled and kept moving.

    I don’t know what kind of father he is, but his children appeared distressed at his behavior.

    He exhibited exactly the type of behavior Dem politicians are encouraging.

    Mostly, around here, I get nods of approval and words of support for my patriotic t-shirts and my Trump-won buttons. But this guy, if his children were not there to constrain him, might have gotten violent. My wife was shaking she was so upset.

    This is what the left is breeding. They want violence that they can then blame on us.

    Be careful, out there.

    • I come across people like that too. Many of us have. That guy does not understand what a fascist actually is. All he knows is what Biden and Pelosi tell him. It never seem to occur to any of them that they just might be getting lied to.

      • All because they will not think for themselves.
        Why, you say? Could be they are lazy, have an elevated opinion of those whom they believe and trust to think for them. Perhaps, feel that they are not smart enough so they place all their trust in others and of course in this case the wrong others.

  4. Well, if for some reason you didn’t know before that Democrats and Leftist Scum were keeping a registry, now you do. 100% accuracy, whatever they accuse others of doing they are doing themselves.

    • Chose – we know that some elements of fedzilla have illegally been maintaining a de facto registry since the bats recently admitted that they have almost one BILLION firearm transaction records tucked away ‘somewhere’. As I have observed before that means there are a LOT more legally purchased guns in our hands than they claim, likely two to three times as many.

      The point is that they DO have that data and given the ‘right’ (wrong?) set of circumstances they will use that info at the behest of their political masters.

  5. As I said before Industry and the Government know everything about you. I find that trying to make excuses for the gun industry over this outrage is really hypocritical.

  6. Danang Dick will be easily re-elected. Connecticutoids are clueless. However, if the GOP retakes the Senate, he will be marginalized into impotence.

    • Basko,

      He’s already impotent, a Republican Senate would . . . leave him pretty much in the same position he’s in now – an ineffective, yapping, unaccomplished backbencher. Danang Dick has one attribute, and one only, and that is occupying a “safe” Dimocrat seat. He, like so many of his cohorts will continue to practice Shakespearean fiction: “A tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.”

  7. If you do not receive letters and such from the dnc, etc. then you are probably already blackballed and on a registry list.

  8. When you go to a gunm shop and the gunm shop calls the government for permission to sale you a gunm after you’ve filled out the paperwork , you just registered that gunm.

    • possum – all too true to some extent but that is VERY dependent on whether you live in a free state or one controlled by democRATs. For example – in my state if you have a valid LTC the vendor still has to record the sale in his bound book, which can be ‘inspected’ at any time by the bats. No NICS check needed since the holder has already been ‘cleared’. The tales of them illegally photographing those books are legion. Now why on earth would they need to do that unless they are illegally maintaining records.

  9. Does anybody not bloody ewell know by now that there are agencies oyutbvther as there should be that hjave the details of EVERY gun and gun owneship and very issued license from the year dodt? That what LICENSING IS FOR TRACEABILITY and ACCOUNBTSABILITY and I cannot see that any law abiding citiuzen can have any o real objection to eoither. After all ALL BANK CARDS both DEBIT and CREDIT are traceable for years ALL AUTOMOBILE ownership is public knowledge all airline travel is registered anyone who has commited a felony has FEDERAL FINGERPRINT RECORDS. All CELL PHONE usage can be recorded and traced but when someboidy thinks that a GUN PURCHASE has become a matter of public record QUESTIONS ARE ASKED.
    Why should the ownership of firearms differ from the ownership of automobiles or Light Aircraft or wild animals or HUNTING LICENSES or FISHING LICENSES if their is NOTHING to hide. All are LAW ABIDING are they not??
    Why do America’s GUN OWNERS think they are ALWAYS, but ALWAYS the exception.? .

  10. Tracing?? authorities only “trace” serial numbers After a crime has been committed and the gun is retrieved. They don’t just think of a number and then check it stupid. But you think the authorities are infallible, of course.


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