By Cameron Joseph - 02/20/13 04:46 PM EST
The National Rifle Association will run full-page newspaper ads in four Republican-leaning states where Democratic senators face reelection as part of an expanded effort by the group to oppose expanding gun control measures.
Sens. Mark Pryor (D-Ark.), Mary Landrieu (D-La.) and Kay Hagan (D-N.C.) are the focus of the ads. The NRA is also running full-page ads in West Virginia, where Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) is retiring and Democrats hope to hold the seat. That state is also crucial because Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), a lifetime NRA member who has come out for some increased firearm regulations, is a crucial swing vote on any gun-control legislation.
The NRA is also running the full-page ad in Maine, where Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) is up for reelection, and in regional editions of USA Today published in all or parts of 14 states, including the swing states of Virginia, Ohio, Pennsylvania.
"President Obama's own experts say that a gun ban like the one he is proposing will not work without being 'coupled with a gun buyback.' A mandatory gun buyback is another way of saying 'confiscation,'" the ad continues, citing an internal Justice Department memo on the matter that leaked last week.
"And what about so-called 'universal' background checks? Obama's own experts say their 'effectiveness depends on ... requiring gun registration.' A mandatory national gun database would be an illegal invasion of privacy unprecedented in our nation's history."
In addition, the NRA will run online ads in other red or swing states where Democratic senators face reelection, including Alaska, Colorado, Montana, New Hampshire and New Mexico.
The ad buy represents a tripling of the size of one the group did around the State of the Union, which includes a YouTube video making a similar argument. That video has already been viewd 275,000 times.