Sen. Tillis and Sen. Burr care more about the NRA than the safety of North Carolinians

Out of 100 US Senators, both of North Carolina’s are in the top three for receiving the most NRA contributions. Sen. Richard Burr and Sen. Thom Tillis received almost $7 million and $4.4 million from the NRA, respectively, according to Public Citizen. In the wake of two mass shootings in Dayton, OH and El Paso, TX,  calls for gun safety reform are increasing. Unfortunately, it is hard to believe Burr or Tillis will betray their financiers and vote for commonsense gun safety reforms.

Tillis recently spoke in support of ‘red flag’ laws, a widely supported method of increasing gun safety, but it’s difficult to imagine he’d take real action on the issue based on his long, twisted history with the NRA.

In 2015, Tillis published an op-ed in the Washington Times graciously thanking the NRA for helping him get elected to the US Senate. In the article, Tillis reaffirms his dedication to gun rights and commitment to prevent any perceived adulteration of the Second Amendment. According to a report published in Politico, the NRA circumvented campaign finance regulations by creating a shell company to donate even more money to Tillis’s Senate campaign.

Burr is no better. The NRA spent almost $7 million in support of Burr’s reelection campaign in 2016, the highest amount the NRA spent on any Senate candidate. Another report suggested Burr’s campaign and the NRA illegally coordinated their political advertisements.

Unsurprisingly, both Tillis and Burr have “A+” ratings from the NRA.

It is frustrating to live in a nation where mass shootings outnumber the days in a year, and the majority of Americans support some form of gun control yet the NRA’s extreme pro-gun agenda always wins. Contrary to what Republicans say, maintaining the Second Amendment while also having safe, responsible gun ownership are not mutually exclusive ideas. However, it is hard to believe either of the NRA’s pawns, Tillis and Burr, would even consider contradicting the organization that put them in office by voting for commonsense gun control. Following any mass shooting, Tillis and Burr always give the classic Republican response: denying their own culpability in favor of expressing their heartfelt thoughts and prayers. They continueto accept millions in campaign donations from an organization that thrives off of violence in order to win elections. Tillis and Burr have a responsibility to protect North Carolinians, but they would rather protect the extreme interests of the NRA.