Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Clinton, Sanders using gun stances to take shots at each other

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton—who has repeatedly attacked her closet rival, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) on his inconsistent record on gun control—may be guilty of the same act. Clinton has aired 740 pro-gun control ads in New Hampshire—24 percent of her total ads from Dec. 18 to Jan. 18—but only 300 in Iowa, where her ads on the wage gap have appeared 23 times more frequently than gun control ads, Chad Day reports for The Associated Press. Less than 6 percent of her more than 5,100 Iowa ads are for gun control. About 1 in 15 Iowans purchase a gun license, compared to 1 in 27 in New Hampshire.

About 88 percent of New Hampshire Democratic primary voters and 82 percent in Iowa say they want to toughen gun laws, according to NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist polls, Day writes. "In New Hampshire, where Sanders leads in latest surveys, the Vermont senator hasn't aired a single ad about his stance on guns this past month. His ads have almost solely focused on economic and health care issues."

One of Clinton's most effect tactics has been criticizing Sanders' gun record, "particularly the senator's 2005 vote to grant gun manufacturers immunity from prosecution, a vote that Sanders now calls a mistake," Gabrielle Levy reports for U.S. News & World Report. While the Sanders camp has circulated a flier saying he is "a lifelong advocate for gun safety" the Clinton camp has responded by calling him "a lifelong advocate for gun companies' safety from liability." The Washington Post has compiled a list of Sanders' record on guns.

Sanders said Monday at a town hall event in Iowa that Clinton only supports gun control when it benefits her, Awr Hawkins reports for Breitbart News Network. Sanders said: "Some of you might recall that back in 2007, when she was running against Barack Obama, she also focused [on gun control], but she thought that Obama was too strong on gun issues. You may remember him referring to her as 'Annie Oakley.' Today, Hillary Clinton is running a lot of advertisements on gun issues. Interestingly enough, she’s running most of them in New Hampshire, where she thinks it will work. [She’s] not running so many of them in rural Iowa. Now you can form your own judgement as to why that is the case."

Elena Schneider of Politico writes, "Democrats appear to be seizing on a moment that wasn’t as viable before 2016." Isaac Baker, a Democratic media consultant, told her, "I think there's a tipping point for Democrats that is fueling a new sense of confidence in using [gun control] as an issue, which they see as potent both in the primary and general."

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