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Rifle maker bounces boss who supports Obama

Discussion in 'Uncategorized Threads' started by Joe Potosky, Oct 30, 2008.

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  1. Joe Potosky

    Joe Potosky Well-Known Member

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    Rifle maker bounces boss who supports Obama

    By Ken Dilanian, USA TODAY

    WASHINGTON — Montana gunsmith Dan Cooper has been ousted as chief executive of the rifle company that bears his name after pressure from gun owners who are angry that he is supporting Democrat Barack Obama.

    Cooper, founder and part owner of Cooper Firearms, told USA TODAY in a story published Tuesday that he has voted for Republicans for most of his life, but he is backing Obama "probably because of the war. And also because the Republican Party has moved so far right in recent years." Cooper said he was attracted to the Democrat's message about "the retooling of America, which involves the building of middle-class jobs and helping American small business be competitive with those overseas."

    Cooper contributed $3,300 to Obama's presidential campaign, according to election records complied by the non-partisan CQ MoneyLine.

    The USA TODAY article sparked outrage from some gun owners and bloggers, including an open letter on a blog called Firearms and Freedom, urging people to boycott the company's products. Many gun enthusiasts believe Obama will try to restrict their right to bear arms, although he has said he respects the Second Amendment.

    In a portion of the interview that was not included in Tuesday's story, Cooper said, "I don't believe that what's being said about Obama and his policies about guns are accurate. I have had a conversation with the senator … he is a stanch supporter of the right to hunt and the right to bear arms."

    The company posted a statement Wednesday night on its website that said:

    "The employees, shareholders and board of directors of Cooper Firearms of Montana do not share the personal political views of Dan Cooper. Although we all believe everyone has a right to vote and donate as they see fit, it has become apparent that the fallout may affect more than just Mr. Cooper. It may also affect the employees and the shareholders of Cooper Firearms. The board of directors has asked Mr. Cooper to resign as President."

    Cooper Firearms employs 38 people, Cooper said Monday. Cooper started the company with two partners in 1990. It manufactures wood-stock bolt-action hunting rifles that start at around $1,600. In October 1992, Cooper presented a rifle to then-President George H.W. Bush at a Montana campaign event.

    In a statement Thursday to USA TODAY, Cooper said, "There is nothing on this earth I will not do for my employees … we have fought through 20 years of building what I believe to be the finest rifles built in America …When the internet anger turned on these innocent people, I felt it was important to distance myself from the company so as not to cause any further harm."

    He said he had resigned the company. He did not address whether he will maintain an ownership stake — except to say, "stronger measures may be forthcoming."

    "It's a really McCarthyism at its worst," said Bob Ricker, executive director of the American Hunters and Shooters Association, which has endorsed Obama. "That's really why our organization was formed, was to deal with this craziness. If you're a gun owner, but you have a contrary view to some of these wackos, they will go out and try to destroy you."

    Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer, a Democrat, said in a phone interview that he was disturbed by the backlash against Cooper.

    "It's the silly season," Schweitzer said. "There are people who have partisan interests here, and they are using the gun issue. Three weeks from now these bloggers are going to wake up, look under their bed and see that their gun is still there."

    The governor, who once described himself as a "gun-toting. .. kind of Democrat," said he is a "big supporter of Cooper Arms."

    "I'll go anywhere in the country to help them sell their product," he said.

    Representatives for the campaigns of Obama and Republican John McCain did not respond to requests for comment.

    Some gun bloggers, such as one who blogs on snowflakesinhell.com, had posted the company's e-mail address and telephone number, encouraging gun owners to boycott Cooper Firearms the company and contact its top executives.

    "This needs to get around," wrote the blogger who identifies himself only as "Sebastian, a thirty something, self professed 'gun nut' living somewhere in Pennsylvania." He added: "Gun owners need to know which companies sell their interests down the river. Here's contact info for Cooper Firearms. I would talk to them, and be sure they know Obama's record, why you're not voting for him, and why you'll never buy one of their products."

    The company said in a statement to USA TODAY that it had received more than a thousand emails over the controversy.

    When the USA TODAY story was first published, Cooper Firearms posted a statement saying that Dan Cooper had only given money to Obama in order to "to help defeat Hillary Clinton" in the Democratic primaries and to protest the shifting of American jobs overseas. The statement said Cooper had then given money to the McCain and the Republican National Committee. Election records show no Cooper donations to McCain or the RNC, and the statement was later taken down.

    Last year, a similar outpouring of outrage derailed the career of Wyoming outdoorsman Jim Zumbo after he denounced the use of assault rifles for hunting. Zumbo was a staff writer for Outdoor Life magazine and the host of a television show on the Outdoor Channel.

    "Excuse me, maybe I'm a traditionalist, but I see no place for these weapons among our hunting fraternity," Zumbo wrote in his blog on outdoorlife.com. "I'll go so far as to call them 'terrorist' rifles."

    "Within a few days, I was radioactive in the industry," Zumbo writes on his website, jimzumbo.com. The magazine "asked me for my resignation, and I was suddenly without employment. I was done writing, and my TV show was on hiatus. Many of the companies that supported me in the past issued severance statements with me on their websites, as did shooting and firearms organizations," including the National Rifle Association.

    Zumbo was able to save his career by publicly embracing assault rifles. He wrote a mea culpa entitled, "I was wrong, big time." And he "went on to work with the Second Amendment Foundation … and attended a three-day assault rifle course, which I immensely enjoyed," he writes on his website.

    "It's very simple supporting the second amendment is like being pregnant. Either you do or you don't,," said Jim Shepherd, who publishes the Outdoor Wire and other newsletters. "Is it right? It just is. It's the way it works. It's absolutism. Dan Cooper laughed at his customers. If that company does not take Cooper out of its name, they're dead."

    Andrew Arulanandam, spokesman for the National Rifle Association, said the Cooper Firearms controversy is "an indication of how voters and gun owners feel about Barack Obama. He has a lifetime record of opposing their rights."

    Obama has been trying to assure voters otherwise.

    Earlier this month in Lebanon, Ohio, he said, "I believe in the Second Amendment. I believe in people's lawful right to bear arms. I will not take your shotgun away. I will not take your rifle away. I won't take your handgun away."
     
  2. crusha

    crusha TS Member

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    Sometimes, you just have to take out the trash.


    B-bye now.
     
  3. skeet_man

    skeet_man Well-Known Member

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    Obama's Acceptable Handgun:


    [​IMG]


    Obamas Acceptable Rifle:


    [​IMG]


    Obamas Acceptable Shotgun:


    [​IMG]
     
  4. GARMASTERS

    GARMASTERS TS Member

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    GOOD RIDDANCE.
     
  5. superxjeff

    superxjeff Active Member

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    It appears that he still doesn't get "IT" It's not your employees we have a problem with it's you! You are the person that hurt your employees Dan not the gun owners or people who own guns and use the internet. His statement really shows very much about him as a person and he really sounds like a liberal. It's always somebody elses fault...... Guess what Dan? The turd is in your pocket because that is where it belongs. Jeff Westlund
     
  6. nipper

    nipper TS Member

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    Why dont you all buy some more exxon oil??

    Bill
     
  7. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Another dumbass ignorant Zumboesque Fudd sent to pasture. Good riddance.
     
  8. Dove Commander

    Dove Commander TS Member

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    Nipper, you aren't right man. It would be nice if you made sense maybe 1 out of 10 posts. Have one of the nurses help you.
     
  9. The Rock

    The Rock Active Member

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    The real question is why won't you buy Exxon Nipper? It is one of the very few stocks that is making a small profit 8%.. An you think that's outrageous.

    I sure wish I had more of it.

    Rock

    Jim
     
  10. H82MIS

    H82MIS TS Member

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    your right rock,,and our wonderful government makes 15% on Exxon,,,talk about bull shit,,,
     
  11. GARMASTERS

    GARMASTERS TS Member

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    I buy Exxon every time I fill up, now $1.99/ gallon!
     
  12. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like a good plan. Their messiah Obama will steal mone...er... "share the wealth" with them so they'll be taken care of.
     
  13. ricks1

    ricks1 TS Member

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    Ic funny that you posted that I made the same comment last week .BUT I havent give up yet, the bit is not out of the horse's ass yet. rick
     
  14. Savage99Stan

    Savage99Stan Active Member

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    Kind of interesting that you use the American Hunters and Shooters Organization as a reference. They, if you look them up and see what NRA/ILA, and a few other real 2nd ammendment supporters have to say, are a sham organization populated with liberal supporters and, like Senator O, will say and do about anything to achieve their goals--which are not to support the second ammendment. Big time supporters of the likes of Gore, Obama, etc. They have only a handful of dues paying members ($25/year) but can pay their executives five figure salaries and make huge donations to the liberal candidates. We gotta watch who we use to support our side.
     
  15. DJM

    DJM Member

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    Mr Cooper states "And also because the Republican Party has moved so far right in recent years"
    I hear this from time to time and I simply cannot understand that point of view. From my vantage point both parties are continually moving to the left. In fact my number one complaint about the Republican party is that they are no longer conservative. Don Miller
     
  16. recurvyarcher

    recurvyarcher Well-Known Member

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    Vote with your money as well.
     
  17. JBrooks

    JBrooks TS Member

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    If Obama wins it will because of nitwits like Cooper who have no vision of the future. They should also change the name of the Company to rid themselves of the scum of his name.
     
  18. pyrdek

    pyrdek Well-Known Member

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    There is also a party that has been steadfast in its support of individual freedoms and has the right to keep and bear arms as a basic part of its platform. The website listed has the Libertarian platform. You may want to pay particular attention to Section 1.6

    This basic belief of individual freedoms and responsibility for one's actions has been part of the Libertarian party's principles from the day it was founded.
     
  19. Colonel Reb

    Colonel Reb TS Member

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    DJM hit the nail on the head about Cooper's comments. When I read that I knew he was politically misinformed. The GOP moving to the right? When they conduct a Kennedy-Johnson style war in Iraq? When they pass Nixon-style attempts to control the free market economy by putting in massive government money? McCain was right when he said in 1994 the GOP was sent to change Washington, but Washington changed the GOP. If Cooper doesn't want to vote for McCain, that's fine, but not Obama. He could have voted for the Libertarians or Constitution Party and kept his position. I voted for McCain via absentee ballot, but if I had it to do over I might have voted for a 3rd party.
     
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