Brendan James has an interesting article about presidential candidate Ted Cruz and one of his campaign fundraisers over at Talking Points Memo. As part of a recently launched “Shoot with Cruz” fundraiser, the Republican senator from Texas is planning to take a “lucky supporter with him on an upcoming ‘shooting excursion.’” James said there was one catch though: The winner may have to undergo a background check first.
The caveat is an interesting one given that Cruz helped lead the effort to defeat a 2013 bill that would have expanded background checks for gun sales nationwide. The bill, which was championed by President Obama in the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre, ultimately went down after an intense lobbying effort from pro-gun groups.
Sen. Ted. Cruz: Universal Background Check Aimed at Creating Federal List of Every Gun Owner
In an interview with TPM on Friday afternoon, Cruz spokesman Rick Tyler defended the contest’s background check requirement and said it was “not inconsistent” with the senator’s track record.
According to Tyler, Senator Cruz hadn’t taken issue with the existing system of background checks. He said Cruz specifically opposed the 2013 bill because it “would have imposed them on sales between private individuals.”
Nonetheless, James said that the background check for the contest might come as a surprise for some of the senator’s supporters because the requirement “didn’t appear on the entry page for the ‘Shoot With Cruz’ contest when TPM viewed it on Friday or in an email about the contest that the campaign sent to supporters this week. (Sign up before June 10!)”
James noted that it appeared “deep in the fine print for the contest, which was located on a separate page on the site. The same page defined the ‘sponsor’ of the contest as ‘Cruz For President.’”:
Promotion Rules. One (1) potential winner will be selected by a random drawing from all eligible entries to be held at the Cruz for President headquarters on Thursday, June 11, 2015. Sponsor may, at its option, conduct a background check on each potential winner. Sponsor reserves the right to disqualify any potential winner from receiving the Prize based on such background check if Sponsor determines, in its sole discretion that awarding the Prize to such potential winner could result in a safety or security risk to any person or persons or could result in the disruption of any event associated with the Promotion. Sponsor will, in its sole discretion, then select one (1) winner from the list of eligible potential winners on the basis of criteria determined and applied by Sponsor to provide for an appropriate range of views, backgrounds, and interests among the winners selected.
Tyler said that the “fine print regarding background checks was written so the contest would abide by the law.” He added, “The language in the contest rules is written to be in compliance of various state laws, because some states would require background checks on a contest like this.” James said that Tyler was unable to “specify which laws, as they were not in front of him.”
Shoot with Cruz! (Daily Kos)