Tuesday, April 24, 2012

John Harris: Debra Maggart Needs to be (Politically) Crucified (Updated)

Posted By on Tue, Apr 24, 2012 at 12:21 PM

A recent photo John Harris shared on Facebook. Should we take up a collection for a one-way ticke to Iraq?
  • John Harris recently shared this photo on Facebook. Should we take up a collection for a one-way ticket to Iraq?
In an email sent to Tennessee Firearms Association members, TFA executive director and political pariah John Harris turns his ire on House Republican Caucus Chairwoman Debra Maggart, calling for her political crucifixion. Maggart, he writes, "has been identified by TFA and we understand other grassroots organizations as the symbolic figure of a Republican legislative leadership that has trampled on the 2nd Amendment rights of citizens."

"Symbolically," he writes, taking care to couch his comments with buffers so he can he defend them as harmless metaphors later, "it is time to display a used crucifix at the entrance to the General Assembly as a warning."

This is all remarkably unsurprising coming from Harris, who has spent the session wetting his political bed with hyperbolic rhetoric and by being himself in public forums. Luckily, Republican leadership on the Hill long ago stopped listening to him.

Like most unhinged, Unabomber-esque screeds, Harris' email is long and meandering. The cause of his latest fit is the news that House Republicans would not take up the Guns-in-Lots bill.

You would think that as a gun lobbyist, Harris' primary goal would be to dispel the idea that people who care about gun rights are paranoid nuts, one Clint Eastwood flick away from going on vigilante bender. You would think that, but apparently you'd be wrong.

Below, the section of Harris' email that addresses Maggart directly:

Rep. Debra Maggart has been identified by TFA and we understand by other grassroots organizations as the symbolic figure of a Republican legislative leadership that has trampled on the 2nd Amendment rights of citizens these last two (2) years, that has made knowing misrepresentations to the citizens regarding their support and that of the caucus for the 2nd Amendment and the rights of citizens, and that demonstrated an unsettleing willingness to abuse the rules to defeat legislation on grounds other than the merits in open recorded floor votes.

Rep. Debra Maggart's political career needs to end much as the Romans crucified criminals - not just to end her tenure but as a glaring example to other Republicans that you cannot take the grassroots groups or the rights of citizens for granted and then put your hand out to Big Business for their support all the while expecting to be re-elected. Symbolicly, it is time to display a used crucifix at the entrance to the General Assembly as a warning. Rep. Debra Maggart's race is not a race limited now to the 45 District from which she claims power. Her race is a statewide race for constitutional conservatives to stand up from all 99 districts and proclaim we will not be taken for granted and we will not have our rights as citizens sold for a measure of silver.

Rep. Maggart has a primary challenger in the Republican Primary. The challenger is Lt. Col. Courtney Rogers . Lt. Col. Rogers is raising the funds necessary to offset the enourmous Maggart warchest that we can assume has been funded in many respects by Big Business and related interests. Lt. Col. Rogers' campaign is asking every firearms owner and conservative in the State who has been taken for granted by Debra Maggart and her peers to contribute "$45 for the 45 District". It is interesting that the 45 is the caliber that has been used in the handguns of patriots and our armed forces for more than a century to defend the freedoms we cherish in this country. If just 10 percent of the 340,000+ handgun permit holders could make that small effort it would practically ensure that the voices of conservatives would no longer be taken for granted by the elected Republican leadership in Tennessee.

We have not reached out to Harris for more explanation, because we're afraid he'll save our phone number. We did reach out to Maggart and House GOP, however.

UPDATE: Action Andy Sher with some response from Maggart and Tom Humphrey with a previous quote from Maggart on Harris.

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