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NRA sets $15M sight on Obama

July 1, 2008 at 11:52 AM

WASHINGTON, July 1 (UPI) -- The powerful National Rifle Association says it plans to spend $15 million to try to paint Sen. Barack Obama as a threat to the Second Amendment.

"Our members understand that if Barack Obama is elected president, and he has support in the Senate to confirm anti-gun Supreme Court nominees, (the determination) could be taken away from us in the future," Chris Cox, NRA's political action chief, told Politico.com.

The day U.S. Supreme Court ruled the right to bear arms is an individual right, Obama of Illinois, the likely Democratic presidential nominee, issued a statement that indicated neither support nor opposition to the decision. His likely GOP challenger, Sen. John McCain of Arizona, enthusiastically supported the decision.

The NRA said it plans to spend about $40 million total on the presidential match-up, splitting its messaging efforts between communicating with its 4 million members and the tens of millions gun owners nationwide.

Obama spokesman Tommy Vietor said the senator "has always believed that the Second Amendment protects the right of individuals to bear arms and will uphold the constitutional rights of law-abiding gun owners, hunters and sportsmen as president."

One House Democrat said the Supreme Court decision removed gun control's divisiveness.

"It's a non-issue," said Democratic Rep. Tim Ryan, who represents the blue-collar Youngstown, Ohio, area and has earned the NRA's backing.

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