Organizing for America (OFA), which originated as the Barack Obama 2012 reelection campaign, is pushing Obama’s gun control agenda by suggesting its supporters host “anniversary events” to commemorate the one-year anniversary of the Newtown elementary school massacre. OFA asserts that the events should act as a “Powerful reminder of what we lost a year ago, and a reminder that we as a nation need to do more to prevent gun violence and keep our communities safe.” OFA wants the nationwide events to ” call on Congress to finally take action to make our communities safer.”
Obama launched a concerted campaign for gun control after the massacre that killed 26 schoolchildren and school employees, saying, “Tears aren’t enough. Expressions of sympathy aren’t enough. Speeches aren’t enough. We’ve cried enough. We’ve known enough heartbreak. What we’re proposing isn’t radical. It isn’t taking anybody’s gun rights. It’s something that, if we are serious, we will do.”
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) criticized Obama for his exploitation of the tragedy to push a political agenda. He told NBC News, “What I don’t think is constructive is what the president is doing right now, which is within minutes of that horrible tragedy in Newtown the president began trying to exploit that tragedy to push a gun control agenda that is designed to appeal to partisans.” Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) agreed, stating it was “deeply unfortunate” Obama “continues to use the tragedy at Newtown as a backdrop for pushing legislation that would have done nothing to prevent that horrible crime.”
OFA has tried to exploit the Newton tragedy before; at the six-month anniversary of the shooting, the organization also called for events to mark the date.