Posts Tagged ‘guns’

What to Expect from the Gun Lobbies

Tuesday, December 18th, 2012 by Geoffrey Lyons

AS A SWELLING chorus of voices rises in support of stricter gun laws, it’s helpful to know what it’s up against.  The pro-gun lobby in Washington has spent over $15 million in lobbying expenditures since 2010, which dwarfs the anti-gun lobby by a degree of 22.  In other words, the pro-gun lobby is 2200% the strength of the anti-gun lobby, and can spit out 66-years-worth of anti-gun lobby expenditures in just three years.  (These terms, pro-gun and anti-gun, are used for brevity’s sake and should not betray any bias on the part of your humble blogger).

But better predictors of how vigorously these lobbies will spend in the wake of last week’s tragedy are in the numbers from 1999 and 2007, the years of the Columbine and Virginia Tech shootings respectively.  In 1999, the pro-gun lobby spent just over $8 million (in current dollars), which is about 150% the amount it spent in 2010.  In the same year, the anti-gun lobby spent roughly $1.2 milli

on, which is over 400% its 2010 number.

In 2007, however, the pro-gun lobby spent only (if that’s the word) $4.4 million, while the anti-gun lobby put in $217,405: both well under 2010 expenditures.  The difference in spending between the two years can be rooted in a variety of factors – Columbine arguably kindled a more vehement public response than Virginia Tech; Republicans controlled Congress in ’99 whereas Democrats had it in ’07 – none free from the charge of speculation.

There thus remain only two unequivocal patterns that can be expected to persist: the pro-gun lobby’s consistent outspending of its rival, and the NRA’s inordinate contribution to this phenomenon.  Besides this, anything can happen.

Data are from the Center for Responsive Politics and the much-needed guidance of a four-function calculator.  See also POLITICO's recent assessment of the gun-rights lobby.     


Weekly Lobbying News Round-Up

Friday, June 4th, 2010 by Vbhotla

Rick Hasen at Election Law Blog gets his hands on a Disclose Act CRS Report – and passes the fun along to us!

A note on lobbying in India: “top banker and government’s key adviser Deepak Parekh today said lobbying is not bad and it really does not matter whether or not it is legalised in India.” He also identifies himself not as a lobbyist but as a “(the government’s) troubleshooter.”  (From the Economic Times).

Leadership PACs tend to pay the big bucks for luxury items. Maybe those lobbyists diligently reporting leadership PAC contributions on their LD-203s will reconsider their expenditures?

This was our personal favorite story of the week: courtesy of Eric Brown at Political Activity Law (and subsequently picked up here, here, and here): Locked, Loaded, and Ready to Lobby in Texas.  I have just three words: only in Texas.

Sneak peek of Monday’s GR Alert:
Rep. Marcia Fudge (D-Ohio) has introduced a resolution that would curb the influence of the Office of Congressional Ethics. The independent OCE has authority to investigate matters concerning Congressional ethics and to pass those matters on to the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct, the entity with authority to penalize inappropriate or unethical behavior.

Citing concerns that the OCE was overstepping its bounds by acting as “the accuser, judge, and jury,” and causing unnecessary damage to reputations, Rep. Fudge would prohibit “unwarranted and premature publication” of the OCE’s reports, and would revise the process to include stricter oversight of OCE jurisdiction and reports by the House’s official ethics committee.

Rep. Fudge is a member of the Congressional Black Caucus, and all 19 of the bill’s co-sponsors are also members of the liberal House interest group; several of the co-sponsors have faced investigations by the OCE that have gone public. One of the CBC’s members, Rep. Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.), was admonished for taking trips sponsored by prohibited companies; the investigation is ongoing.

Roll Call reports on the resolution here, and Rep. Fudge’s press release is here.