Is Bill Gates becoming a threat to the NRA?
NBC Right Now reports that Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and his wife, Melinda, have donated $1 million to a firearms Initiative that would require background checks on gun sales within the state of Washington that take place at gun shows and online. With the amount of support Initiative 594 is gaining in the campaign, it has about $6 million.
Gates made his large donation to the gun sales Initiative on Friday, but it was made public Monday on Washington's Public Disclosure Commission website.
As Daily Beast notes, what makes this such a blow to the National Rifle Association, is that Bill Gates is highly influential. He helps pave the way for change and his efforts to fight malaria around the globe in 2000 brought deaths down by 20 percent in 11 years. Overall, the lives of one million African children were saved because of the Gates Foundation.
The Microsoft co-founder is also a media magnet. Whatever he supports or fights against draws attention. The NRA might be miffed at Bill Gates for supporting the 594 Initiative.
Daily Beast writes:
"... The NRA has shown its disdain for anyone with the guts and resources to take on its political cartel of legally bribed legislators around the country."
Prior to Gates' donation, fellow Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen donated $500,000, which he gave in early August. Last week, venture capitalist Nick Hanauer donated another $1 million. His total donations now come to $1.4 million.
Although Initiative 594 mandates background checks for all purchases at gun sales and private sales, some exemptions would apply; these include gifts within a family and antiques. It has nothing to do with registering guns, but buying from licensed firearms dealers, as well as online
According to Seattle PI, a rival Initiative is also on the ballot in Washington. As the report explains, "it would effectively block I-594 from taking effect: I-591 forbids Washington from enacting any gun regulation that is not already part of federal law. The gun lobby had used its influence in Congress to block universal background check legislation."
Concluding their in-depth report on Initiative 594, Daily Beast writes:
"Sure, in an ideal world big money wouldn't play such an outsize role in our elections, such as this hugely important ballot initiative in Washington state. But that's not what the NRA wants. It just wants its big money still to be all that decides the outcome, and it isn't. Which is why Wayne LaPierre's having a bad day."[Image via Huffington Post]