Newsmax TV & Webwww.newsmax.comFREE - In Google Play
Newsmax TV & Webwww.newsmax.comFREE - On the App Store
Skip to main content
Tags: feinstein | klobuchar | noem

NRA Convention Separates GOP Frontrunners From 'Also Rans'

wayne lapierre of nra and gov kristi noem republican of south dakota

With NRA Executive Vice President and CEO Wayne LaPierre by her side, Gov. Kristi Noem, R-S.D., signs an executive order to protect gun rights in her state at the 2023 NRA-ILA Leadership Forum: April 14, 2023, in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Michael Dorstewitz By Wednesday, 19 April 2023 11:42 AM EDT Current | Bio | Archive

Not only did last week’s National Rifle Association convention in Indianapolis attract hunters, gun collectors and shooting enthusiasts from all over the country, but it was also a siren song to Republican presidential hopefuls.

And that only makes sense: if there’s one issue upon which Republicans can agree, it’s their support for the right to keep and bear arms as guaranteed by the Second Amendment.

Although the two frontrunners made a good case for themselves, the award for the best show of Second Amendment support has to go to a “dark horse” candidate — South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem, who hasn’t even declared.

Former President Donald Trump delivered the convention’s keynote address Friday, during which he promised that if elected again, he would encourage Congress to approve a national reciprocity for concealed carry.

"Just like your driver’s license or your marriage license, your Second Amendment must apply across state lines," he said.

Trump also observed that America’s recent school shootings aren’t actually a "gun problem, but a mental health problem, a cultural problem and a spiritual problem."

He added he would try to set up a program to train school teachers to carry firearms.

"If we can send billions to Ukraine then we can afford to spend one-tenth of that amount to protect American children and American schools," Trump said.

But the former president also wasted much of his nearly hourlong speech by not playing to the audience of gun enthusiasts.

For example, he discussed the criminal charges that Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg filed against him, as well as grand jury investigations targeting him in Georgia and Washington, D.C.

He referred to them as "election interference on a historic scale," and promised that if reelected he would sign legislation that would levy "federal penalties for prosecutorial abuse."

All that’s fine, but it has nothing to do with the Second Amendment.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis was more on-target, and fired his first volley even before his convention appearance.

A pro-DeSantis super PAC released a video accusing Trump of being something that should have made every NRA member’s blood run cold: a "gun-grabber."

It ran during an NRA leadership forum.

"Trump promised NRA members he’d have their back," the ad begins. "But when Second Amendment rights came under attack, Trump abandoned us and stood with liberal Democrats.”

The spot continued with Trump in his own words.

"Half of you are so afraid of the NRA," Trump said in the clip.

"We have to fight them every once in a while, that’s OK."

The ad also depicted him voicing approval for "red flag" laws, establishing a nationwide minimum age to purchase firearms at 21, and voicing support for proposals advanced by Democratic Sens. Dianne Feinstein of California, and Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, both strict gun control proponents.

DeSantis also addressed the convention directly on Friday via pre-recorded video. Unlike Trump, he remained on-message

"As governor, I've resisted calls to take up gun control even when such a stand is superficially unpopular because I understand that it is precisely at those moments when a right is unpopular that it needs true champions," the governor said.

He referred to the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms as the “last backstop of freedom and the foundation upon which all our other rights rest.”

And DeSantis recently proved that his words aren’t just hollow rhetoric. He called on Florida lawmakers to pass a constitutional carry bill.

They did, HB543, and on April 3, the governor signed it into law.

But the award for the most pro-Second Amendment speech has to go to the South Dakota governor, who also addressed the convention Friday, and even signed an executive order to "further protect the 2nd Amendment rights of South Dakotans" during her remarks.

It prohibits government agencies from contracting with financial institutions that discriminate against firearm-related entities.

But the capper occurred when she described her "amazing family."

"Can you believe I’m a grandma? Not just once either, but twice," she said. "For those of you with grandchildren, you know, they are why we get up each day and continue to fight for our values."

Noem explained that "Little Miss Addie and Branch have brought us so much joy. And Miss Addie, who is almost two years old, already has both a shotgun and a rifle!"

She added, "And she has a little pony named Sparkles too, so the girl is set up."

She tweeted afterwards, "I may be a mom and a grandma, but I AM THE @NRA."

She sure is! And so is little Miss Addie!

In an age when men claim to identify as women solely to win at sports, it’s refreshing to see Gov. Noem crush a couple of guys at a male-dominated activity.

And that goes for little Miss Addie too.

Michael Dorstewitz is a retired lawyer and has been a frequent contributor to Newsmax. He is also a former U.S. Merchant Marine officer and an enthusiastic Second Amendment supporter. Read Michael Dorstewitz's Reports — More Here.

© 2023 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

The award for the most pro-Second Amendment speech has to go to the South Dakota governor, who also addressed the convention Friday, and even signed an executive order to "further protect the 2nd Amendment rights of South Dakotans" during her remarks.
feinstein, klobuchar, noem
Wednesday, 19 April 2023 11:42 AM
Newsmax Media, Inc.

Sign up for Newsmax’s Daily Newsletter

Receive breaking news and original analysis - sent right to your inbox.

(Optional for Local News)
Privacy: We never share your email address.
Join the Newsmax Community
Read and Post Comments
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.

Interest-Based Advertising | Do not sell or share my personal information

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved
Download the NewsmaxTV App
Get the NewsmaxTV App for iOS Get the NewsmaxTV App for Android Scan QR code to get the NewsmaxTV App
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved