Presidential races

Hillary compares NRA to Iranians, communists

Hillary Clinton is ramping up her rhetoric on guns, comparing the National Rifle Association (NRA) to global adversaries she negotiated with as secretary of State.

“You know, the NRA’s position reminds me of negotiating with the Iranians or the communists,” Clinton said at an Iowa town hall on Wednesday.

The Democratic primary front-runner accused the nation’s largest gun lobby of spreading propaganda to keep its dues-paying constituents paranoid.

“The NRA tries to keep gun owners — the ones who are members — really upset all the time so they can keep collecting their money, because they tell them they’re the only thing that’s going to stop the black helicopters from landing in the front yard and people’s guns being seized,” Clinton said. “That’s the argument they make. And it works with some people and it has turned a lot of people into absolutists themselves.”

The former first lady said she sympathizes with President Obama in his fight with the gun lobby.

“I know why the president feels discouraged, because it is discouraging to see the cynicism, the greed, behind this lobbying,” Clinton said. “And that’s why we can’t let them get away with it. We can’t just say, ‘OK, nothing we can do about it,’ and walk away. We’ve got to fight back.”

Clinton has highlighted the issue of guns in her presidential campaign following a community college shooting in Oregon that left nine dead and seven wounded.

She unveiled a gun control plan earlier this week that aims to paint her to the left of top primary rival Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), who is a moderate on guns.

After her remarks, the presidential campaign of former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley released a statement trying to one-up Clinton on guns.

“It’s no secret that the NRA named Governor O’Malley the ‘top menace’ to their cause because he has proven he will not back down to them, and that’s what he will continue to do as president,” the statement said.

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