NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — When more than 70,000 gun enthusiasts descend on Nashville for the National Rifle Association's annual meeting this week, they won't be hearing from one prominent Tennessean: Republican Gov. Bill Haslam.
A Haslam spokesman confirms that the governor won't be welcoming the crowd to the new Music City Center on Friday. An NRA spokeswoman praised the governor and his staff for helping bring the convention to Tennessee.
But she said the NRA was unable to accommodate a speaking role for Haslam at the opening of the event that will feature several potential Republican presidential candidates.
Some gun rights advocates have been wary of Haslam for his membership in Mayors Against Illegal Guns, a group co-founded by former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, before he ran for governor in 2010.