Talking McCain and the NRA

A couple of days ago I posted that the Secret Squirrels Service isn’t going to allow heaters into the hall where Johnny “Col. Tigh” McCain is speaking on Friday’s Leadership Forum at the Annual Meetings.

There were some pissed off people in the comments, and I also got some nasty emails that were directed at NRA, Sen. McCain, and the Secret Service all with varying degrees of vitriol.  I actually really wanted to talk about this issue, because a lot of people have really got the the wrong idea about this and are angry about something they don’t really have a good reason to be angry about.

First off, this isn’t NRA’s fault.  NRA can in no way dictate to the Secret Service how they (the Service) is going to run protection for Sen. McCain.  Trust me on this one, when you’re dealing with the Secret Service on the issue of executive protection, it’s their way or the highway.

It’s also not really McCain’s fault either; the minute he agreed to accept Secret Service protection, he immediately ceased being the guy who made the final decisions about his safety and security.

I want you guys for just a second to look at this issue from the point of view of the protective detail that has to watch McCain’s shorts during this convention.  If I was in their shoes, I would have made the exact same decision to screen people.  And it wouldn’t be because I think some NRA member is going to take a shot at McCain, it would have been because if I didn’t screen everyone going into this thing, than I wouldn’t be doing my job.

Having been to events before involving presidents and candidates and such, I can say that attendees have been screened at every single one that I’ve seen in the past – to expect NRA members to not be screened is expecting special treatment.  Even if every single NRA member that would be carrying to this event is a law-abiding citizen, the protective detail really can’t take that chance.  Just because you or I or any of the other 60,000 NRA members in attendance wouldn’t do something stupid/illegal doesn’t mean that the Secret Service isn’t going to treat this like any other speaking engagement for a presidential candidate.

If you don’t like McCain, that’s fine.  If you don’t like NRA, that’s your prerogative as well – but if you are going to hate on NRA or McCain, don’t get mad at them for something that’s completely out of control.  It’s also kind of foolish to get mad at the Secret Service for doing their jobs.


  1. The NRA could and should have asked the Senator to speak from an adjacent room on closed circuit TV if the SS insisted, rather than ask their members to give up their right to bear arms.

  2. Fail.

    McCain can ask the SS folks to just GTFO at any time. I don’t buy this “candidate must follow SS orders” line of crap.

  3. There are times when the 2nd Amendment has limits. The security of the President is one of those times, as long as it is limited and focused. For example, disarming everyone in the same room as the President is legit. Disarming everyone in the same city (a-la-DC) as the President, is not.

    Face it, the Brady Campaign nuts would like nothing better than to have McAmnesty, Hiltery, or Barry With No Middle Name killed at a NRA convention. Think how that would re-energize gun-control. It was a good call on the SS part and was protective of the NRA and gun rights.

    I wish Barry With No Middle Name would have spoken. I think the NRA is too tied to Republicans. I know Barry With No Middle Name is an anti (member of the Board of the Joyce Foundation) but he could be brought over to our side slightly with some out-reach, or at least not make the issue a big part of his administration.

    I don’t believe McAmnesty is a friend of gun owners. Anyone that advocates background checks doesn’t understand the meaning of “shall not be infringed”. Background checks require the innocent to prove they are not guilty, require Americans to surrender their privacy rights, and more troubling formally makes the government the determiner of who can bear arms or not.

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