The following article is an editorial piece that incudes opinion. It reflects the views of only the author and not necessarily those of AllOnGeorgia.
The National Rifle Association, in a move that has further reduced their legitimacy and shown their allegience to compromise, has endorsed current Lieutenant Governor Casey Cagle in the Republican Primary race for Georgia’s next Governor.
Apparently, the NRA does not remember much of what has happened over the last several years.
First, let’s take a look at how misguided Cagle is on the purpose of the Second Amendment. Cagle issued a press release with the announcement Thursday saying:
“I’m honored and excited to have the NRA’s support because its cause is one that I share and that I have fought for. I’m a lifetime member of the NRA, and I’m proud of my unwavering record for the Second Amendment. Like the NRA, I believe the framers of the Constitution meant what they said when they wrote that the right to bear arms shall not be infringed.
Gun ownership is a right that Georgian’s take seriously, and the NRA endorsement is the gold standard in our state. I’m an avid outdoorsman, and I taught all three of my boys how to hunt, shoot, and respect firearms.”
The first indicator that we have regarding Cagle’s newness to the idea of the pro-gun movement is that, in his praise of the endorsement, he mentions he is an outdoorsman. Anyone with a solid grasp of the Second Amendment – or any of the Bill of Rights – understands that these are protections for The People from their government. It has nothing to do with hunting or the outdoors.
Second, Cagle has single-handedly fought pro-Second Amendment legislation in the State Senate over his tenure. One of his most egregious attempts was back in 2014 when he supported an effort to implement training requirements for gun owners during a Conference Committee on House Bill 65. (The measure did not ultimately pass.) Other offenses against our Second Amendment protections include:
- He says in his endorsement press release he understands the right “shall not be infringed,” but in the 2017, he refers to limits on the Second Amendment as “thoughtful compromise.”
- Cagle also said in 2014 that he would support a measure to allow public university leaders to decide whether or not they would allow gun owners to carry on campus. (So apparently college leaders are most qualified to decide when rights apply)
- In February 2018, when asked by Georgia Tech students as to whether he would push for an expansion of the campus carry bill signed into law in 2017, Cagle said he “recognized the university system is adamantly opposed.” (Is that a NO? Or is that “I’ll defer to an unelected body”?)
- Cagle allegedly told 6 members of the clergy in 2016 that he did not feel campus carry was responsible, positive, or truly representative of the Republican Party. The Pastor who chronicled the discussion with Cagle said some of the gun lobbiest were referred to as ‘extremists and dangerous.’
- He blocked three pro-gun amendments in the Senate in 2017.
- In 2009, Cagle blocked a bill that would have expanded the places those who carry a conceled, permitted weapon coud travel.
And it isn’t just gun rights that Cagle doesn’t understand. It’s the sanctity of a private enterprise, too. Recall when Cagle caused a national firestorm after Delta announced the elimination of the NRA discount for passengers – a discount that assisted all of 13 people…EVER. Cagle spearheaded the initiative to block the $40 million jet fuel tax break over the elimination of a discount for 13 people instead of standing against all corporate tax breaks for the 10.43 million people of Georgia.
So whether the NRA chose to back Cagle because of his lackluster pro-2A record or because he was willing to meddle in the dealings between two private corportations, the NRA just looks less principled as we make our way through this list.
The endorsement from the NRA is much like the rest of Cagle’s sham of a campaign: it is based on politically expedient statements in a very narrow time frame. Whether it’s about ‘backing the blue’ in 2017 despite having served in office for 21 years and never pushing for a bill of similar nature or the time in 2018 that he helped push for a cannabis oil study commission on in-state access after saying publicly in debates in 2017 that he would not support in-state cultivation…Casey Cagle says what will help him at the time instead of doing what will help Georgians in the long run.