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Giffords, Demand Justice to pressure GOP senators to reject Trump judicial pick

Giffords, Demand Justice to pressure GOP senators to reject Trump judicial pick
© Sen. Josh Hawley

Gun safety organization Giffords and judicial group Demand Justice plan to launch a joint ad campaign to pressure Republican senators to reject one of President TrumpDonald TrumpWhat blue wave? A close look at Texas today tells of a different story Democrats go down to the wire with Manchin Trump's former bodyguard investigated in NY prosectors' probe: report MORE's circuit court nominees. 

The groups will run an ad campaign targeting GOP Sens. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsPortman: Republicans are 'absolutely' committed to bipartisan infrastructure bill Democratic clamor grows for select committee on Jan. 6 attack Centrists gain foothold in infrastructure talks; cyber attacks at center of Biden-Putin meeting MORE (Maine), John CornynJohn CornynProgressive groups launch .5M ad buy to pressure Sinema on filibuster Black lawmakers warn against complacency after Juneteenth victory The Senate is where dreams go to die MORE (Texas), Joni ErnstJoni Kay ErnstOvernight Defense: Pentagon details military construction projects getting .2B restored from wall funds | Biden chooses former commander to lead Navy | Bill seeks to boost visa program for Afghans who helped US Meghan McCain: Harris 'sounded like a moron' discussing immigration Senate bill would add visas, remove hurdles to program for Afghans who helped US MORE (Iowa), Cory GardnerCory GardnerBiden administration reverses Trump changes it says 'undermined' conservation program Gardner to lead new GOP super PAC ahead of midterms OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Court rules against fast-track of Trump EPA's 'secret science' rule | Bureau of Land Management exodus: Agency lost 87 percent of staff in Trump HQ relocation | GM commits to electric light duty fleet by 2035 MORE (Colo.) and Thom TillisThomas (Thom) Roland TillisSenate Republicans: Newly proposed ATF rules could pave way for national gun registry Centrists gain foothold in infrastructure talks; cyber attacks at center of Biden-Putin meeting Centrists gain leverage over progressives in Senate infrastructure battle MORE (N.C.), all of whom are up for reelection in 2020, asking them to vote against Trump nominee Lawrence VanDyke

A vote on VanDyke's confirmation to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals is slated for next week.

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The ads, which particularly highlight VanDyke's gun rights stances, will run on Facebook and Instagram starting Friday.

"This NRA mouthpiece shouldn't be a judge. Vote no," one of the ads will say, referring to the National Rifle Association.

There will also be advertisements customized with the name of each senator. 

Christopher Kang, Demand Justice's chief counsel, said in a statement that VanDyke "would use his lifetime judicial appointment to advance the NRA’s latest strategy — using our courts to strike down common-sense measures to prevent gun violence."

"Senators cannot claim to be horrified by mass shootings and then vote for a judge who will reject any effort to address them,” Kang added. 

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Giffords managing director Robin Lloyd said in the statement that "VanDyke's pledged fealty to the gun lobby’s agenda disqualifies him from a lifetime judicial appointment."

"If the Senate cares about ensuring that the people’s elected representatives retain the ability to craft solutions to the nation’s ongoing gun violence crisis, they must vote no on VanDyke,” Lloyd said. 

National Republican Senatorial Committee spokesman Nathan Brand called the ads "stunts by far-left groups working for their big dollar donors, not the American people."

“Left-wing special interests are desperate to obstruct a Republican U.S. Senate majority working to continue the best economic turnaround in U.S. history," Brand said in a statement to The Hill.

Sen. Dianne FeinsteinDianne Emiel FeinsteinProgressive groups ramp up pressure on Feinstein Youth climate activists march outside California homes of Pelosi and Feinstein Cosmetic chemicals need a makeover MORE (D-Calif.) has previously raised questions about VanDyke's past statements on gun control, asking him about responses to a 2014 NRA questionnaire in which the senator said VanDyke answered that “Gun control laws are misdirected."

Updated: 6:20 p.m.