Democratic presidential candidate Mike Bloomberg’s $10 million gun control advertisement may not have the impact he was hoping for.
Bloomberg’s 60-second commercial touting gun control aired during the 2020 Super Bowl and quickly sparked negative reactions from defenders of the Second Amendment, members of the National Rifle Association and even top Democrat strategists.
The ad focused on the shooting death of a young football player, George Kemp, in 2013.
“On a Friday morning, George was shot,” Calandrian Simpson Kemp said of her son’s death in the ad. “George didn’t survive. I just kept saying, ‘You cannot tell me that the child that I gave birth to, is no longer here.’ Lives are being lost every day. It is a national crisis.”
Across the bottom of the screen, the caption read: “2,900 children die from gun violence every year.”
Kemp was not a child, but was 20 years old at the time of his death in an incident reportedly gang-related.
NRA members slammed the billionaire for pushing his gun control agenda.
“Mike Bloomberg suggests that disarming minority males like myself will keep us alive. But I have news for you: Mike Bloomberg is a white billionaire who has no place in telling me how I can defend myself or my loved ones,” a man named Rehn said in a video response to the ad Sunday.
“As an African American male that you want to disarm, I promise you will never take away my Second Amendment,” he added, addressing Bloomberg.
NRA members don’t like hypocritical NYC billionaires. You want to know how real Americans feel, Bloomberg? Watch this!
— NRA (@NRA) February 3, 2020
“As a mother of a three-year-old little boy, my family means everything to me. As a woman, I believe the best way to protect myself is with a firearm,” Ashley Boop said. “And Michael Bloomberg will never take that right away from me.”
“Mr. Bloomberg, your home is defended by armed guards at all times,” Mikaela Adcoc added. “Why can’t I exercise my Second Amendment rights to protect mine?”
Bloomberg has long touted “common-sense” gun legislation and has spent millions supporting candidates who support gun control measures. But even Democrats were critical of his Super Bowl ad.
“Bloomberg acts like the’s the only one doing something on the issue,” a Democrat strategist told Breitbart. “But the movement is a lot bigger than him. He needs to wake up and realize that mothers have been going to funerals and fighting back a lot longer than he’s been buying ads on TV and calling himself the leader of a movement.”
Reports from Fox News and Free Beacon noted the “misleading” claims in Bloomberg’s ad which suggests the featured statistic is referring to younger children only.
When you look at the same data but remove the adults you get 1,499 gun deaths per year among children between 2013 and 2017. That’s about 51% of the number shown in Bloomberg’s Super Bowl ad. https://t.co/P6xyHp1QVt
— Stephen Gutowski (@StephenGutowski) February 1, 2020
Reason Magazine reported:
“According to to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, FactCheck.org notes, the average number of firearm-related deaths involving Americans 17 or younger from 2013 through 2017 (the period used by Everytown for Gun Safety) was about 1,500, roughly half the number cited by Bloomberg. Furthermore, nearly two-fifths of those deaths were suicides, meaning the number of minors killed each year by ‘gun violence,’ as that term is usually understood, is about 73 percent smaller than the figure cited in Bloomberg’s ad.”
Bloomberg’s campaign defended the commercial.
“Ask any grieving parent whose 18- or 19-year-old son or daughter was shot and killed, and they will tell you they lost a child,” Bloomberg spokesperson Julie Wood told Fox News. “There are simply too many of these deaths, and Mike has a plan to prevent them with common-sense gun safety laws.”
Mike Bloomberg does not represent the millions of law abiding gun owners in this country who want to protect themselves, and if the need arises, protect the lives of others.
His policies and rhetoric will be destructive and irreversible.
— Ryan Fournier (@RyanAFournier) February 3, 2020
“It is regrettable but not surprising that salient facts didn’t make the ad,” NRA’s Amy Hunter told Fox News. “Bloomberg cherry-picked aspects of the story to push his agenda. Bloomberg pushes for confiscation of guns and stripping regular Americans of our right to self-defense while he enjoys armed security 24/7. He sees America as his kingdom, and the rest of us as his peasants.”
“If candidates want to push their anti-gun agenda, that’s their right,” Brad Polumbo wrote in a Washington Examiner op-ed. “But Bloomberg ought to show more respect to Super Bowl viewers than to think they’re so stupid they’ll fall for his falsehoods and shoddy statistics.”
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