Montana gun owners have been subjected to an abundance of lies this election season. Leading the misinformation campaign is fake hunting group Montana Hunters & Anglers Leadership Fund. Bankrolled by a wealthy San Francisco Bay Area political megadonor, the astroturf organization is working to hide U.S. Senate candidate Steve Bullock’s anti-gun record.
The Montana Hunters & Anglers Leadership Fund has put out an ad claiming Bullock is “strong on guns.” This is false.
In 2018, Bullock expressed his support for a ban on commonly-owned semi-automatic firearms and magazines capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition. Discussing his support for a ban, Bullock explained, “When I view an assault weapons ban, it's sort of military, semiautomatic, typically removable clips, a magazine of 10 or more — it's like the AR-15s.”
Such a ban is unconstitutional. In the landmark Second Amendment decision in District of Columbia v. Heller, the U.S. Supreme Court made clear that the Second Amendment protects ownership of firearms “in common use at the time” for “lawful purposes like self-defense.”
The firearms industry has estimated that Americans own more than 17.5 million semi-automatic rifles. The AR-15 is the most popular rifle in the U.S. and therefore indisputably “in common use” and protected by the Second Amendment. Similarly, there are hundreds of millions of magazines capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition in the hands of law-abiding citizens. Many of the most popular rifles and handguns are designed to use, and come equipped with, these ubiquitous magazines.
In fact, these firearms and magazines are so ubiquitous that they were included in the Montana Hunters & Anglers Leadership Fund’s deceptive ad. In the spot, a purported gun owner can be seen bragging about his gun collection. The actor is seen handling a Glock pistol.
Glocks are designed to use, and come standard with, magazines capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition. The Montana Hunter & Anglers Leadership Fund is using a firearm with a magazine Bullock is seeking to ban to lie about the governor’s anti-Second Amendment record.
The organization’s unfamiliarity with firearms should come as no surprise, as the counterfeit group is concerned with neither hunters nor anglers and is Montanan in name only. The latest data from the Federal Election Commission lists San Francisco Bay Area left-wing activist Karla Jurvetson as the group’s sole donor.
Donor records show that the well-heeled Californian has spent tens of millions on left-wing political causes. In 2019, the political megadonor held an election fundraiser featuring Barack Obama at her Los Altos, Calif. home. Tickets to the event were $10,000. However, to take a picture with the former president cost attendees $35,500. Those willing to splurge could secure VIP status for a princely $355,000.
NRA members and gun rights activists should work to share with their family, friends, neighbors, and other freedom-minded individuals the truth about who is behind the Montana Hunters & Anglers Leadership Fund and their dishonest efforts to undermine the Second Amendment. Gun rights supporters must also work to ensure their fellow Montanans know the truth about Bullock’s unconstitutional plans to ban commonly-owned semi-automatic firearms and standard capacity magazines.