The National Rifle Association is making its attack on the president personal.
Just hours before President Obama unveiled sweeping reforms to gun laws, the NRA released an ad referencing his children and calling the president a hypocrite.
"Are the president's kids more important than yours?" the video says. “Then why is he skeptical about putting armed security in our schools when his kids are protected by armed guards at their schools? Mr. Obama demands the wealthy pay their fair share of taxes, but he's just another elitist hypocrite when it comes to a fair share of security.”
The White House called the ad “repugnant and cowardly.”
During his speech on Wednesday, Obama addressed the NRA and its supporters in Congress, telling lawmakers to consider the safety of Americans over an A rating from the gun lobby.
The president also urged Congress to ban assault rifles; pass universal background checks on people buying guns; and approve Todd Jones, the acting head of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, as its permanent chief. After the speech, Obama signed 23 executive orders
intended to reduce gun violence.
“Let’s do the right thing for them [the victims of gun violence] and for this country that we love so much,” he said before declaring, “I’m going to sign these orders.”
responded to the president’s remarks in a statement
issued two hours after the speech. Here's what it said:
“Throughout its history, the National Rifle Association has led efforts to promote safety and responsible gun ownership. Keeping our children and society safe remains our top priority.
“The NRA will continue to focus on keeping our children safe and securing our schools, fixing our broken mental health system, and prosecuting violent criminals to the fullest extent of the law. We look forward to working with Congress on a bi-partisan basis to find real solutions to protecting America’s most valuable asset – our children.
“Attacking firearms and ignoring children is not a solution to the crisis we face as a nation. Only honest, law-abiding gun owners will be affected and our children will remain vulnerable to the inevitability of more tragedy.”
In a press conference just a week after the shootings in Newtown, Conn., NRA President Wayne LaPierre proposed putting armed guards in schools nationwide
On Wednesday morning, Twitter was buzzing with comments about the NRA and the president’s speech, as several related discussions emerged as trending topics, including the hashtag #guncontrol.
The reforms the president proposed and signed into law were brought forward by Vice President Joe Biden, who has met with 229 groups—from law enforcement officials and health care professionals to gun proponents and victims of gun violence—in the past month.
A recent poll by YouGov
showed that 43 percent of Americans think Biden’s views go against those of most Americans, compared with 33 percent who think LaPierre’s views on gun control are out of line.
Meanwhile, a Time/CNN poll
found that 55 percent of Americans favor stricter gun laws, compared with 44 percent who oppose them.
Here’s the NRA ad, which is airing on the Sportsman Channel: