Obama Blasts NRA for Missing Town Hall

Kevin Lamarque/Reuters

President Obama lashed out against the National Rifle Association on Thursday for its absence at a nationally televised town-hall meeting on gun violence hosted by CNN. “There’s a reason why the NRA’s not here. They’re just down the street,” the president said. “And since this is the main reason they exist, you’d think they be prepared to have a debate with the president.” Obama said NRA officials have declined numerous invitations to strike up a dialogue. The president, who announced a series of executive actions on gun laws this week, also said he appeared at the town hall because his advocacy for gun-control measures is “consistently mischaracterized” by pro-gun advocates like the NRA. “If you listen to the rhetoric, it is so over the top, so overheated,” he said referring to critics of his plan, who claim his policies aim to “take away everybody’s guns.”