Everytown for Gun Safety Vows $1 million in Virginia’s November Elections

Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund, the campaign arm of one of the nation’s biggest gun control groups, announced Thursday that it would spend at least $1 million in Virginia as part of an “initial investment” to elect Democrats in November.

The fund is donating $450,000 directly to gubernatorial contender Ralph Northam, and spending $250,000 on mailers on his behalf. It’s also giving $300,000 to Attorney General Mark Herring for his re-election bid, as he faces attack advertising from the National Rifle Association.

“We are making this initial investment because Ralph Northam and Mark Herring have been forceful champions for gun violence prevention in Virginia, while their opponents subscribe to a dangerous ‘guns everywhere’ agenda,” Brynne Craig, a senior strategist for Everytown, said in a statement.

Everytown, a New York-based advocacy group largely bankrolled by former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, has been a big spender in recent Virginia contests.

In 2015, it spent more than $2 million on television ads supporting Democratic candidates for state senate as the party unsuccessfully sought to regain control of the chamber.

Virginia allows gun owners to carry concealed firearms as long as they have a permit. Everytown, its affiliated grassroots group, Moms Demand Action, and Northam are opposed to “constitutional carry”, or the right to carry concealed guns without a permit. Northam also favors a ban on assault weapons, expanded background checks and wants to restore a state law that limited handgun purchases to one each month, among other measures.

The Republican candidate in the Nov. 7 election, Ed Gillespie, is opposed to any further gun control.


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