WASHINGTON DC – The National Rifle Association on Tuesday took the next step in its nationwide campaign to confirm Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court, highlighting the stakes for the Second Amendment and 100 million American gun owners.
The NRA’s Institute for Legislative Action (NRA-ILA) is spending over $1 million in the national buy for the ad, entitled “Four Justices,” which makes the point that with Justice Anthony Kennedy’s July 31 retirement, the Supreme Court is now comprised of four justices who support Second Amendment rights in some form, versus four justices who oppose it in every form.
“The NRA strongly supports Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the U.S. Supreme Court because he will protect our constitutional right to keep and bear arms,” said Chris W. Cox, executive director, NRA-ILA. “It’s critical that all pro-Second Amendment voters urge their senators to confirm Judge Kavanaugh.”
The ad shows Justice Stephen Breyer – a liberal appointed by Bill Clinton – sitting for a television interview with journalist Charlie Rose, where Rose asks, “What does the Second Amendment mean to you?”
“Not the right of an individual to keep a gun next to his bed,”answered Breyer. That answer is noteworthy because during oral argument in the landmark Supreme Court case on the Second Amendment, District of Columbia v. Heller, Chief Justice John Roberts referenced a citizen having a firearm in the nightstand next to his bed.
In other words, Breyer said – consistent with his dissenting opinion in Heller– that private individuals have no constitutional right to own or possess a gun.
“Four liberal justices oppose your right to self-defense,” a narrator tells the audience, as pictures of those justices appear on screen. “Four justices support your right to self-defense,” showing those justices as well.
“President Trump chose Brett Kavanaugh to break the tie,” declares the ad. “Your right to self-defense depends on this vote.”
The ad is running nationwide, but NRA-ILA is also launching regional variations in five states: Alabama, Alaska, Indiana, North Dakota and West Virginia.Those ads are targeting three vulnerable red-state Democratic senators who are up for reelection in 2018: Joe Manchin (West Virginia), Joe Donnelly (Indiana), and Heidi Heitkamp (North Dakota).
One regional spot also targets one red-state Democrat who is up in 2020 but considered vulnerable even now: Doug Jones of Alabama. A fifth variation encourages one moderate Republican senator who has not yet announced her decision on Kavanaugh: Lisa Murkowski of Alaska.
“Judge Kavanaugh is a highly qualified nominee for the U.S. Supreme Court,” says the NRA. “We encourage all senators to listen to the American people and vote in favor of his confirmation.”
The ads will run through August 27.
Ken Klukowski is senior legal editor for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter @kenklukowski.