93% of Senators Who Rejected Gun Control Paid by NRA

When 90% of Americans want increased gun control policies and their elected officials reject even minimal reform, it begs the question, who exactly are our Congress members representing? Well, as usual, the money tells a significant part of the story: 42 out of the 45 Senators who voted no on the recent bill have received significant donations from the gun lobby.

“Politicians are bought!” “Politics are corrupt!” “Corporate interests over the welfare of citizens!” You’ve probably heard it all before and this kind of thing – sadly – no longer surprises you. But even if it’s something you’ve come to expect, that doesn’t make it any less disgusting or any less important to remind everyone how flawed the system is.

With research conducted by the Sunlight Foundation, The Guardian reported on the donations from the NRA and other pro-gun organizations over the last couple of decades. The NRA alone had given $800,000 to the Senators who helped nix the bill.

Among the top NRA recipients are Roy Blunt (Missouri) with $60,550 and Saxby Chambliss (Georgia) with $56,950. Fellow Republican Senators John Thune (South Dakota), Lindsey Graham (South Carolina) and Jim Inhofe (Oklahoma) have each received well over $40,000 apiece, as well.

While donations of this sort are generally made during election cycles, at least two Senators suspiciously received money from the gun industry in recent weeks. During the month of March, Richard Burr (North Carolina) and Dan Coats (Indiana) had donations from an ammunition manufacturer and shooting group. Considering that these donations came at a time when gun control looked more likely to pass, their potential impact cannot be discredited.

In fact, there may be many more donations made by the gun lobby in recent months that we are not aware of yet. Although that financial information would normally have been made public by now, the ongoing Congressional ricin scare has postponed the filing deadline. Since the NRA and gun lobby have certainly been busy positioning themselves politically since the Sandy Hook massacre, it is not unreasonable to believe these groups put their money where their mouths are.

Of course, these groups have enough financial sway that they do not even need to spend it to get what they want. Commonly, the NRA will stoop to fear tactics to keep politicians on their side. Rather than giving money, the NRA threatens to give politicians’ future opponents significant donations to defeat anyone who they feel has slighted them. President Barack Obama blames these threats on the bill’s failure, explaining, “They worried that the gun lobby would spend a lot of money and paint them as anti-second amendment.” Nevertheless, he vowed that “the effort is not over.”

While there are pro-gun control organizations that have raised money to push the alternative agenda, the capital spent is a fraction of what the NRA spends to oppose these measures.

Although Rand Paul is one of the three Senators who voted no without having recorded gun lobby donations, he does have an affiliation with the National Association for Gun Rights, a group that considers itself a “conservative” version of the NRA. The other two Senators, Heidi Heitkamp and Mark Begich, are both Democrats who have no known notable gun lobby ties.

Notably, four people who voted in favor of the bill had also received money from the gun lobby. Senators John McCain (Arizona) and Pat Toomey (Pennsylvania) were just two out of four Republicans who supported increasing gun control, while Joe Manchin (West Virginia) and Tim Johnson (South Dakota) followed their Democratic party over their former benefactors’ wants.

As much as we have a gun problem in this country, lobbyists and private interest campaign money may prove to be a more dangerous threat. So long as our political system enables a powerful group’s interests to take precedence over the will and well-being of the American people, our safety is constantly at risk.


Related Stories:

4 Congressional Relatives Who Are Well-Paid Lobbyists

Poll: Americans Back Gun Restrictions

States Allow the Mentally Ill to Regain Gun Rights



Kriss Ite
Kriss Ite3 years ago

Oh, I forgot to say this in my last comment: according too https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6lyunRYMenY&index=34&list=PLkYQwSCzfVRGFvJAusObryN_3-tm-Okg4, ALL crime and violence rates are falling in general anyway.

Kriss Ite
Kriss Ite3 years ago

While I do NOT like corporate lobbies, however, I feel that there must be a counterbalance between we the people and they the bigshots because not all of us can afford bodyguards. Anyway, as said on https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e5_WfZjn4jo&index=32&list=PLkYQwSCzfVRGFvJAusObryN_3-tm-Okg4, there are more variables than just the availability of weapons: you can help reduce ALL violence and crime by doing things like giving people better human services, better healthcare, better education, and more than just controlling (or attempting to control) weapons.

Brian Akhavan
Brian Akhavan3 years ago


Brian Akhavan
Brian Akhavan3 years ago

Why must all decent non-violent people fight against "gun control"? Why is the right to keep and bear arms truly a fundamental individual right? You can find the answers in this new book.

People frequently ask why we are so dedicated to our cause? This book answers that question by collecting the key facts and arguments in one place.

People have asked us to present the whole JPFO argument in one place. We have done it. Available now in an easy-reading format and a handy size, the new book is entitled Death by Gun Control: The Human Cost of Victim Disarmament.

The message is simple: Disarmed people are neither free nor safe - they become the criminals' prey and the tyrants' playthings. When the civilians are defenseless and their government goes bad, however, thousands and millions of innocents die.

Professor R.J. Rummel, author of the monumental book Death by Government, said: "Concentrated political power is the most dangerous thing on earth." For power to concentrate and become dangerous, the citizens must be disarmed.

What disarms the citizens? The idea of "gun control." It's the idea that only the government has the right to possess firearms, and that citizens have no unalienable right to use force to defend against aggression.

Death by Gun Control carefully examines the "gun control" idea: its meaning, its purposes, its effects. It comes in many forms, but in every form it enables the evildoers and works against righteous defense.

Nick Andrews
Nico Smart3 years ago

Cheryl, stop trying link the NRA or any other group to the actions of a mentally-disturbed wackjob. They are completely irrelevant.

Cheryl F.
Cheryl F3 years ago

Eliott Rodgers - another person with mental/emotional problems that was able to go and purchase guns and look what happened.

When are the lives of innocent people going to become more important than the money the NRA gives to politicians?

Robby K.
Past Member 3 years ago

When rich politicians like Bloomberg dictate softdrink size & pour $100M's into anti-gun propoganda, then I'm infinitely thankful to the NRA, NAGR, & others who stand for our Constitution! Or pretty soon, politicians will change laws at whims (oh wait, BO does it already w/a phone & a pen!) so no one has a voice to counter them!God help us ALL! I'll bet over 93% of all anti-gun propoganda headlines are paid for by our taxes; politicians use as scare tactics! People whine that AK/AR/etcs & Uzi's(!?) are used in 7-11 hold ups? WTF!? I've NEVER heard of an uzi used in such a crime. I'd have to Google to see what one looks like. AK/ARs? F___ing SPARE ME! Makes as much sense as a square bowling ball! Carry something that big under your coat to hold up a dime store for a few hundred $. Yeah...RIGHT! Let's move on to important things for now- like jobs. REAL unemp's >14%. Our UNhealthcare policy has cost us billions. More have lost good plans than those who've gained shi__y ones! No one can afford obammycare fines- HTF COULD they? And IF it's so good, then ALL of congress & those who reside in the Whitehouse should have it too, at least for awhile.

Linda McKellar
Past Member 4 years ago

BRAVO HELEN! We are the ones that are free, not those among Americans who live in fear.

Helen D.
Helen D4 years ago

@Gar M...... I'm Dutch and Australian. Lived 20 years in the Netherlands and 14 years in Australia. So go ahead and ask me about the freedom in these countries.......

Heck in the Netherlands marijuana is sold LEGALLY in coffee shops. Sounds pretty free to me. Oh and mass shootings? Can't remember ever hearing about one there.

Australia, last time I checked we're not all locked up in jail either. OMG we even have freedom of speech!!!! Wow! This allows me to come onto CARE2 to ridicule your paranoid rubbish.

Like Elizabeth said, we don't have to send our kids to school in bullet proof vests.
We are the ones that have the freedom. We're not being held at ransom by gun lobbyists.

Having to worry, live in constant fear AND arming yourself and your kids because you might get shot due to too many people having guns, does NOT sound like freedom to me.
It sound like a nation in the tight grip of gun violence.

Freedom is not having to worry every day if your child might get shot in a school massacre.
Freedom is knowing you won't get shot by an insane and mentally unstable person, when you go do your shopping.
Freedom is feeling safe in your own country!

Robert H.
Robert Hamm4 years ago

Most kids PLAY They don't understand that any gun can kill someone. They are playing!!!!
Akl it takes is ONE careless moment. And kids are plenty careless.