NRA Pulls Out Obama ‘Guns And Religion’ Line

The National Rifle Association used an old conservative standby on Wednesday to make its latest claim that President Obama is an “elitist” bent on stripping firearms from law-abiding owners.The NRA’s “Stand And Fight” campaign — which launched the widely criticized TV ad featuring Obama’s daughters — came out with a new video that again tried to cast the president as anti-gun rights.

“We all remember Barack Obama’s 2008 comments to a room of San Francisco elites,” the ad’s narrator says. “Quote, ‘it’s not surprising then they get bitter. They cling to guns or religion.’ Unquote. The arrogance of their superiority requires this reminder: they don’t rule us. They don’t give us rights. We grant them power.”

Conservatives often refer back to what they call Obama’s “bitter clinger” line, which came at an April, 2008 fundraiser. Obama later apologized for the quote. The full line as it was reported in 2008:

You go into these small towns in Pennsylvania and, like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing’s replaced them. And they fell through the Clinton administration, and the Bush administration, and each successive administration has said that somehow these communities are gonna regenerate and they have not.

And it’s not surprising then they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy toward people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.

The NRA has been using the “elitist” language to push back on a number of gun violence prevention measures proposed by Obama and others. Last week, the group released a video saying it was hypocritical for politicians to call for a ban on high-capacity magazines.