BELLEVUE, WA â€“ The Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms (CCRKBA) is today calling on the Federal Election Commission to investigate whether the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence has violated FEC regulations and Federal Election Campaign laws by advocating the election of federal candidates in communications to the general public.
â€œFor at least the past two weeks,â€ noted CCRKBA Chairman Alan M. Gottlieb, â€œthe Brady Campaign has been sending out endorsements over the U.S. Newswire for public consumption. Each one of the Brady Campaignâ€™s news releases had to be paid for, and this amounts to the organization promoting the election of candidates to federal office through paid advertising.
â€œThis week, the Brady Campaign complained to the FEC about activities of the National Rifle Association and Gun Owners of America, which is like the pot calling the kettle black,â€ Gottlieb observed. â€œWe havenâ€™t forgotten that in 2003 the Brady Campaign was fined $26,000 by the FEC for failing to properly report $200,000 in expenditures on mailings during 2000 that opposed the re-election of two Republican House candidates.â€
In his letter to the FEC, Gottlieb recalled that, according to a report on the Public Citizen website, in both 2000 and 2002, the Brady Campaign â€œreported to the IRS that it had no political expenditures. That is, they insisted that none of their communications was intended to influence the outcomes of any elections.â€
â€œThat was clearly false then, and it would be so today if they made the same argument,â€ Gottlieb said, â€œbecause theyâ€™ve been publicly endorsing people left and right â€“ well, left, anyway in a political sense â€“ for the past couple of weeks. These endorsements appear on the Brady Campaignâ€™s website. I canâ€™t see any difference between what they allege the NRA and GOA are doing, and what they themselves are actually doing.
â€œThen, again,â€ Gottlieb concluded, â€œhypocrisy has always been a staple of the Brady Campaign. They claim to support gun ownership, but push for laws to strip Americans of their firearms rights. Now theyâ€™re meddling with gun ownersâ€™ right to be informed about political races. Thatâ€™s not campaign hi-jinks, itâ€™s sinister and insidious.â€