Fighting one of the nation’s largest special interest groups might take a lot of time and money, but Michael Bloomberg says he has both.
The former New York City mayor announced on April 15 he was devoting $50 million to fund Everytown for Gun Safety, a grass-roots organization calling for stronger gun control, and to counter consistent lobbying efforts of the National Rifle Association.
Operating under the new group will be the pre-existing Mayors Against Illegal Guns and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, to which Bloomberg also provides funding.
Describing its intentions, Everytown’s site reads:
“Gun violence touches every town in America. For too long, change has been thwarted by the Washington gun lobby and by leaders who refuse to take common-sense steps that will save lives.
But something is changing. More than 1.5 million mayors, moms, cops, teachers, survivors, gun owners, and everyday Americans have come together to make their own communities safer. Together, we are fighting for the changes that we know will save lives.”
Everytown doesn’t contest the 2nd Amendment, but only calls for “common-sense public safety laws(.)”
“It’s simply too easy for the wrong people to get guns(.)”
An average of 86 Americans are killed every day by gun violence, the organization says.
Everytown’s efforts appear just as nonpartisan as Bloomberg (who’s held offices as a Republican, Democrat and independent) himself; for example, its advisory board includes members of both the Bush and Obama administrations.
Bloomberg’s $50 million launch may seem generous, but will need much more in additional backing. Last year, NRA spent over $3.4 billion on lobbying alone.
“We’ve got to make them afraid of us,” Bloomberg told the New York Times.
edited by tw