The Obama administration is trying desperately to be seen by gun owners in this country as “one of them”. This past weekend, the President took part in some skeet shooting during a visit to Camp David. Supporters of the President hope that the photo op of Obama shooting a gun for sport will endear him to responsible gun owners and help calm fears that he is out to ban all guns.
Vice President Biden, looking for any opportunity to remain in the spotlight as part of his 2016 electoral strategy, has done the President one better.
In what detractors are calling a “transparent pander” to the gun lobby, Vice President Joe Biden today announced that he ‘accidently’ shot a friend in the face during a turkey hunt, reminiscent of former Vice President Dick Cheney’s shooting of his friend Harry Whittington during a similar hunt in 2006.
His statement said in part, “Look, folks, I’m just one of the millions of responsible hunters out there, just like Dick Cheney, who had a bad day. I know I’ve been accused of shooting off at the mouth for time to time but this was just an accident. Hey, I’m just like you. I was clinging to my gun, and before you know it, BOOM. Scared the crap out of me, that’s the God’s honest truth.”
The Brady Campaign Against Gun Violence believes Biden deliberately shot his hunting partner to look more like his predecessor Cheney, a favorite among the gun crowd for his unapologetic support for gun rights and wars of choice.
“Gun owners loved Cheney and anything that makes Biden sympathetic like Cheney is a win for him,” said Les Killin, regional lobbyist for the cause. “Nothing says “I feel your pain” to gun owners than shooting a friend in the face and Biden’s smart. He knows that. We only hope it works so Biden can advance our agenda.”
The NRA, in a reversal, quickly leaped to the Vice President’s defense.
Wayne LaPierre, speaking from an undisclosed underground location, said that “accidents happen” and that Biden’s victim should consider stocking up on more weapons in order to provide adequate security from future “accidents”.
“The only thing that stops a Vice President hunting turkeys with a gun is an armed hunting partner with a gun,” thundered LaPierre. “In fact, there is a 20% sale on all rifles at Wal-Mart this weekend, and if you mention my name, you receive a free bumper sticker with Thomas Jefferson’s quote that ‘The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants’, while supplies last. I think it’s time to stock up, don’t you?”
Jay Carney, the President’s Press Secretary told reporters that this incident should reinforce the arguments that the nation needs tighter background check standards.
“Do you really believe that Joe Biden could have legally purchased a rifle with his history of unforced political gaffes and bizarre public behavior if we had a thorough background check system in place? The President is committed to tougher mental health standards and now you know why.”
The name of Biden’s victim was not immediately released, but the person was described by a Biden spokesperson as a “former supporter”.
Biden is not expected to face charges.