King County Executive Dow Constantine’s proposal (reported by KING 5 News) to re-direct tax revenues to allow for expansion of the Washington State Convention Center in Seattle could be a godsend for Pacific Northwest gun owners, because the larger facility might be able to attract the annual National Rifle Association convention.
The last time the NRA was in Seattle was in May 1997, the year that members – myself included – saw Charlton Heston elected to the Board of Directors and subsequently to the office of vice president. Prior to that, NRA was here in 1985, at the Seattle Center.
This column never realized that Constantine, a liberal Democrat, would support a program that might bring the NRA back to town. We checked this morning with NRA Secretary E. James Land. He confirmed a conversation we had a few years ago about why the NRA could not come back to Seattle for its annual members’ meeting: The Convention Center simply is not a large enough facility right now to handle the convention, which now draws 60,000 to 70,000 members – and several million dollars – to local economies in such places as Pittsburgh, St. Louis, Charlotte and Orlando. They have facilities that can handle the size of such a convention.
King County Executive Dow Constantine is prepared to ask the state legislature to redirect taxes used to pay off Safeco Field and finance the expansion of the Washington State Convention and Trade Center.-KING 5 News
But if Constantine is successful, an expanded convention center could once again provide a magnet facility for the 4 million member organization.
Think of the upside of an NRA gathering. These law-abiding gun owners could take advantage of their time in the Jet City to visit some of the marvelous parks, including Green Lake and Woodland Park. NRA could invite local officials to participate in workshops about concealed and open carry, our state constitutional right to bear arms provision, Second Amendment incorporation and maybe we could get Ted Nugent to do a seminar on wolf management.
It would pump millions of dollars into the local economy. That may not impress anti-gun Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn, but the business community would love it. McGinn is a green mayor, but the kind of green that appeals to businesses – hotels, motels, restaurants, rental car agencies, cab companies and so forth – comes out of people’s wallets rather than government coffers. We’re not sure McGinn understands that, but you can bet the Chamber of Commerce does.
So, Dow, here’s to you! Stick by your guns, and ours, and bring the NRA back to the Pacific Northwest.
MEANWHILE, The Washington Times yesterday picked up on the story reported here, here and here about Iowa Sen. Charles Grassley’s inquiry into the slaying of a Customs and Border Protection officer, and how that murder might be linked to a gun sting operation run by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
We still haven’t seen that story in the Seattle Times, of course, even after Bellevue’s Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms called on its members to contact Congress and demand an investigation. Sen. Grassley has documents showing approximately 769 firearms involved in one part of ATF’s “Operation Gunrunner” that were revealed in the indictment of Arizona resident Jaime Avila, Jr. and 19 others. Grassley’s office found that 103 of those guns have been recovered, but he wants to know what happened to the rest.
Mr. Grassley noted that in addition to the assault rifles, the Avila indictment refers to approximately 769 firearms, of which 103 were recovered.
“So, where are the other approximately 666 weapons referenced in the indictment?” he asked. “Why did the ATF not seize them?”-Washington Times
For two years, the Obama administration has been making noises about American guns fueling the Mexican drug war. Grassley apparently is wondering the same thing my colleague, National Gun Rights Examiner Dan, has been investigating; whether the ATF operation may be the source of hundreds of the guns that the White House has complained about.
This column also noted last week that Stratfor Global Intelligence published a story debunking the “90 percent myth” about where all of those guns come from that are being recovered in Mexico. Naturally, the gun prohibition lobby does not want you to read this information…which exactly why you should.
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