Two VA Tech victims come out against Creigh Deeds
More evidence that people are coming around to the idea that Creigh Deeds might actually win this thing. Two victims of the Virginia Tech shootings just sent out a lengthy e-mail encouraging voters not to support Deeds in Tuesday’s primary. This is the first political advocacy I have come across from the families connected to the shooting during this primary.
The two victims, Omar Samaha and Colin Goddard spoke only for themselves and did not claim to take up the mantle of the all the VA Tech families, but their recommendation speaks volumes, particularly for gun control advocates.
In the e-mail Samaha and Goddard said that while Deeds is a “good person” who they agree with on “many issues”, his repeated votes against closing the so called gun-show loophole (he ultimately came around to supporting it) and his overall stance on gun control issues makes them worried. Here is a portion of their statement:
“But Senator Deeds has a record on guns that worries us. Senator Deeds opposes our one-gun-a-month law – and even Bob McDonnell supported that. And earlier this year, he voted to change the law to allow people to carry concealed weapons into bars. Governor Kaine vetoed the bill, and Senator Deeds voted to override his veto. The veto survived, and so it is still illegal to carry a concealed weapon into a bar. But if Senator Deeds is elected, that won’t be the case for long.”
What is interesting about this statement is that it is only in opposition to Senator Deeds, it does not advocate the support of anyone else.
While the statement is powerful, and lends credence to the McAuliffe and Moran attack line regarding Deeds’ position on guns, it may have come too late. Conventional political wisdom dictates that most voters have made up their mind at this point in the election.
Senator Henry Marsh has just sent out the following statement in defense of Creigh Deeds:
“Senator Deeds’ record on guns is just like Jim Webb’s and Mark Warner’s – two successful Democrats who have won primary and statewide elections . And no one has worked more closely with the Virginia Tech families to close the gun-show loophole than Senator Deeds. I respect the students’ opinion, but Senator Deeds’ record of working with Governor Kaine and myself to close the gun-show loophole is un-matched.”
The full statement from Omar Samaha and Colin Goddard can be found after the jump..
There are a lot of issues facing Virginia right now, but ever since the tragic
shooting at Virginia Tech in 2007 that claimed so many innocent lives and
drastically changed ours, we’ve learned that gun violence has touched every
community in Virginia. We’ve found that there is still much work to be done to
prevent future tragedy and protect our rights at the same time. So one issue
that still remains strong with us and our families is public safety.
Our next governor will make a lot of decisions for his citizens and their public
safety concerning the states’ guns laws. For example, whether or not to close
the gun show loophole or to allow concealed weapons into bars.
Bob McDonnell is against closing the gun show loophole, which allows criminals
and those who are found to be mentally incompetent, to purchase guns from a gun
show completely unchecked. He is also for allowing concealed weapons into bars.
It is important to our public safety that we elect a governor who is going to
make sure our public safety is a top priority.
Senator Creigh Deeds opposed closing the gun show loophole for years before he
voted to close it. Like a lot of the other family members of the people killed
at Virginia Tech, we were glad that he came around.
But Senator Deeds has a record on guns that worries us. Senator Deeds opposes
our one-gun-a-month law – and even Bob McDonnell supported that. And earlier
this year, he voted to change the law to allow people to carry concealed
weapons into bars. Governor Kaine vetoed the bill, and Senator Deeds voted to
override his veto. The veto survived, and so it is still illegal to carry a
concealed weapon into a bar. But if Senator Deeds is elected, that won’t be the
case for long.
We believe Senator Deeds is a good person. And on many issues, we agree with
him. But keeping the people we love safe is the single most important issue to
us, and that’s why Senator Deeds won’t be getting our vote on Tuesday. We urge
other Virginians to vote on Tuesday for one of the other Democrats.
Omar Samaha and Colin Goddard