Republican North Carolina Rep. Ted Budd owns a gun shop. That’s his business. In 2016, the race for the 13th congressional district was a mini-version of the national GOP primary for president; 17 people ran. Budd, who has zero political experience, ran and won (via Charlotte Observer):
Budd’s lack of political experience seemed to work the same magic it has for GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump. The conservative Club for Growth Action invested $500,000 in TV spots that helped Budd beat his closest rival by a nearly two-to-one margin.
The Club, which focuses on economic issues, touts Budd as a “pro-growth outsider” who has “faced the government’s crushing burden on small businesses.” The super PAC’s investment in him was the second-highest amount it has spent for a House candidate this year.
Five days after Budd’s primary win, Omar Mateen shot and killed 49 people at a gay club in Orlando, Fla. Mateen used an assault-style rifle like those Budd’s store north of Winston-Salem sells.
Budd, 44, doesn’t shrink from the debate over gun control. The former seminarian says the massacre revealed less about the shortcomings of gun laws than the violent impulses of some owners.
“This is not a device problem, but a people problem,” he said. “It’s intellectually lazy to continue to talk about a device problem when the real problem is evil – the darkest parts of human nature that can often go unchecked at times.”
Gun sales have soared since President Barack Obama took office in 2009 and ProShots, the store and indoor range Budd has owned since 2010, is no exception. Customers are growing more diverse in age, gender and lifestyles, he said, and most are motivated by self-defense.
The Observer added that even Budd’s Democratic opponent at the time, Bruce Davis, was also a Second Amendment supporter, expert shooter, Marine Corps veteran, but one who supported the constitutionally questionable no-fly, no buy law and expanded background checks.
In 2018, things are a bit different, notably how one of Budd’s potential Democratic opponents thinks that him owning a gun shop and offering defense and shooting courses is training mass shooters at his business.
Since @RepTedBudd is removing traces of his extremism, let it be documented on my Twitter he may be training mass shooters at his stores in NC. Tactile training is not gun safety. It is lethal training. My Rep sells AR’s and then provides “training” #StockpilingRep— Adam Coker (@AdamFromNC) March 29, 2018
Adam Coker took to Twitter to say, “Since @RepTedBudd is removing traces of his extremism, let it be documented on my Twitter he may be training mass shooters at his stores in NC. Tactile [sic] training is not gun safety. It is lethal training. My Rep sells AR’s and then provides ‘training.’”
Yeah, these people say they’re not extremists, but spout off that owning a gun store and offering run-of-the-mill firearm training courses is mobilizing the next generation of killers. It’s absurd. It’s not the pro-Second Amendment camp that kills the debate on gun politics in this country. It’s the Left. And you trust these folks when they say they’ll stop only after we have a new so-called assault weapons ban, magazine limits, and expanded background checks? Hell no. There is nothing wrong with law-abiding gun owners taking courses on how to properly use their firearms in self-defense situations. Grow up.
The Democratic primary for this race is on May 8. Coker or Kathy Manning will be Budd’s 2018 opponent.