42 of 45 Senators who Voted against Gun Reform Bills Received Donations from Gun Lobby
The gun lobby employed both the carrot and stick in convincing enough U.S. senators to oppose gun-control reforms.
Of the 45 senators who voted against the legislation, 42 received contributions from the National Rifle Association (NRA) in the most recent election cycle alone, as did 205 of the 435 members of the House of Representatives. Only four of the 56 senators who voted in favor of increased background checks received money from the NRA, according to data compiled by the Sunlight Foundation.
Some senators, such as Republican Dan Coats of Indiana, accepted donations from pro-gun groups as recently as three weeks ago.
Of the current members of the Senate, the ones who have benefited the most from the largesse of the NRA since 1990 are Roy Blunt (R-Missouri) with $60,550 in campaign contributions; Saxby Chambliss (R-Georgia) at $56,950; John Thune (R-South Dakota) with $48,605; and Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) at $46,600.
Supporters of the legislation have said the NRA threatened senators as well to keep them in line, with promises of attack ads in their home states if they helped President Barack Obama achieve his gun-control goals.
-Noel Brinkerhoff, David Wallechinsky
To Learn More:
Gun Control Reform: All But Three 'No' Senators Received Pro-Gun Cash (by Dan Roberts, The Guardian)
NRA’s Allegiances Reach Deep into Congress (by Lee Drutman, Sunlight Foundation)
Gun Industry Doesn’t Need a Majority to Stop Background Checks and “Straw” Purchases (by Noel Brinkerhoff, AllGov)
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