Using the dead - especially if they are family members - as political footballs, is reprehensible behaviour and sadly befitting of the American Left
Erica Lafferty, the daughter of slain Sandy Hook Principal Dawn Hochsprung, crashed Republican Senator Kelly Ayotte’s recent town hall meeting, with some media outlets celebrating it as an example of gun control advocates “pushing back.”
During the meeting which occurred last Tuesday in Warren, Lafferty exploited her mother’s death to score quick political points against Ayotte. It was shameless. Lafferty asked:
“You had mentioned that the burden to owners of gun stores that these expanded background checks would cause. I’m just wondering why the burden of my mother being gunned down in the hall of her elementary school isn’t as important as that?”
Sen. Ayotte responded that the Toomey-Manchin bill wouldn’t have prevented Newtown, which is absolutely true. After seeing the cultural entrenchment firearms have in this country, the left has resorted to exploiting the dead to further their agenda because the facts – and the people – are not on their side.
Additionally, despite what some major news outlets may think about Lafferty, the local papers were horrified – and called her antics political “bullying.”
The New Hampshire Union Leader printed an editorial on May 1 asserting that:
Ayotte explained her vote and explained that the background check bill would have done nothing to prevent the Newtown shootings. That fact has been pointed out by numerous news organizations. Lafferty was unmoved.
“It’s disappointing and disgusting that she can pretty much look me in the eye and try to justify my mother’s murder and the murder of five other educators and the murders of 6- and 7-year-olds,” Lafferty told Politico afterwards. “It’s disgusting.”
No, what is disgusting is deliberately mischaracterizing someone’s position for the purpose of portraying that person as a willing accomplice to murder. That has been the left’s strategy since Newtown. It is a testament to the Senate that a majority of its members, including Ayotte, did not cave to such bullying.
More disconcertingly, Shawn Millerick of the NH Journal wrote on May 2 how:
...the media certainly covered what they wanted to see. The New York Times, the Washington Postand Politico all created the impression that Ayotte faced a firestorm of criticism at her town hall meetings. Only Politico, in its second story on the controversy, bothered to mention the following:
But there is also ample support for the senator, with supporters holding up signs that said, “N.H. Stands with Kelly.” Ayotte received standing ovations from the crowd in this timber-industry town, drowning out those who were booing her. The National Rifle Association has also aired radio ads expressing its support for Ayotte.
The truth is, Ayotte enjoys a great deal of support for her vote in this Live Free or Die State. And the elite media would do well to shine a light on those who were protesting her, as Fox News did on Wednesday night. See the below clip featuring an Obama-sponsored protester holding a sign splattered with fake blood politicizing the Boston marathon bombing.
He also noted that “these protesters made for great props for the elite media. But they are not Sen. Ayotte’s constituents and they won’t have the privilege of voting in the 2016 election, when Ayotte is next up for re-election. Her supporters will.”
Also, most of them were from outside the state, so it was co-ordinated astroturfing at best. Yet, the most despicable aspect of this tantrum is that the Obama-affiliate 'Organizing for Action' seems to feel that Boston wasn’t significant due to the lack of mass death.
Is the fact that nothing will change on gun control forcing liberals to put every tragedy on a graduated scale? Of course, since you really can’t fundraise off of the death of one eight-year-old boy. With twenty children, that’s media gold for months. It’s depraved. It’s twisted. It’s American leftism.
Lafferty has misdirected her hostility, and in the process – has tarnished the heroic actions of her mother by using her as a political football. Nothing in the latest foray to curb our Second Amendment rights would’ve stopped Newtown, even Sen. Richard Blumenthal admitted this point before the vote.
Lastly, Lafferty should have known that a significant number of Democrats sided with Republicans on this issue. I wonder if she'll crash a town hall meeting by Sen. Pat Leahy in neighboring Vermont if the opportunity presents itself.
After all, Vermont, while being a blue state, has some of the most lax gun laws in the country, including no permit that is required for concealed carry.
Matt Vespa is a conservative blogger based in Virginia. Follow him on Twitter @mvespa1
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