In support of the March for Our Lives, progressive advocacy organization MoveOn.org Civic Action has commissioned billboards challenging Republican members of Congress for their acceptance of campaign funding from the National Rifle Association and continued opposition to gun safety measures in the aftermath of the Parkland school shooting. In Colorado, these billboards challenge Sen. Cory Gardner and Rep. Mike Coffman.
The in-district billboards, erected Monday, directly address Gardner and Coffman and are located at 8415 E. Colfax Ave. in Denver and 7380 E. Colfax Ave. in Aurora, respectively. They personally address the Congressmen before asking: “How Many Dead Kids Until You Say No to the NRA?”
Both Gardner and Coffman are being called out for their record of support for pro-gun bills instead of gun safety measures, and for campaign funds received from the NRA.
Gardner has an “A” rating from the NRA and is listed as number five on the New York Times’ top 10 career recipients of NRA funding among the Senate. Through donations and spending to benefit the candidate, Gardner has received a total of $3,879,064 from the NRA. His voting record demonstrates a lack of support for gun control legislation, such as his vote against a bill that would strengthen background checks for those attempting to purchase firearms.
Coffman also has an “A” rating from the NRA and has received more money from the group than any other member of Colorado’s congressional delegation since 2010. Coffman has received over $100,000 from the group throughout his political career.
Coffman was also a supporter of the 2015 Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act, which would have allowed individuals authorized to carry a concealed firearm in his or her state of residence to do so in any other state in accordance with the terms of unrestricted licenses or permits within that state.
A recent New York Times piece from Eric Lipton and Alexander Burns pointed out that aside from the contributions the NRA makes to politicians, much of the organization’s political power comes from their ability to mobilize their members against politicians who they deem a threat to the Second Amendment.
Move On has commissioned three other billboards directed at Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV), Rep. Jeff Denham (R-CA), and Rep. Peter Roskam (R-IL). Like those in Colorado, the billboards have been erected in the districts represented by the respective members of Congress. Move On also commissioned planes to fly over March for Our Lives events Saturday. These planes, which called out Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) and Rep. Kevin Yoder (R-KS), carried banners that read “VOTE 4 KIDS, NOT NRA.”
“Enough is enough. Our elected officials need to protect our kids – not the NRA – both at school and in our neighborhoods from gun violence. They must cease worrying about how supporting sensible reforms to stop gun violence will affect their campaign donations from the NRA. It is unacceptable that while mass tragedies continue to occur Republicans in Congress refuse to take meaningful action,” said Michael Crawford, Campaign Director at MoveOn.org. “We support the young people who are marching for their lives this weekend and stand with them in demanding sensible gun violence reforms.”
More than 2 million people participated in March for Our Lives events nationally on Saturday.