In the wake of the horrible mass shooting at Sandy Hook, many Americans are rightly asking their elected officials to begin to debate serious legislation that could help prevent such tragedies in the future. Ranging from a variety of gun control reforms to mental health legislation, these various policy options are entirely reasonable to debate in the wake of a series of mass shootings this year.
But following each shooting this year, Congress failed to truly debate any serious reforms in this area. Why is this? Many point to the power of organizations like the National Rifle Association which typically oppose any reforms whatsoever to gun laws and which downplay gun massacres.
Let’s look at exactly how much power anti-gun control groups have on Capitol Hill. I looked at just one metric — how much money they spent lobbying.
Last year, the NRA spent $2,205,000 lobbying Congress. The pro-gun control Brady Campaign spent $30,000. Michael Bloomberg’s pro-gun control Mayors Against Illegal Guns spent $150,000 and the anti-gun control Gun Owners of America spent $1,307,996 .
Altogether, pro-gun control groups spent $180,000 and were outspent 19-to-1 by anti-gun control groups, that spent $3,512,996.
We don’t think that groups with more money should have a bigger voice. That’s why we’re going to counter with people power.