CHILLICOTHE, Ohio – Gov. Ted Strickland on Friday sought to allay concerns of gun owners in his state who fear Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama would push for greater restrictions on firearms.
“There is probably no governor, I would say, in the United States of America, who has a stronger, better record in the support of the Second Amendment than does Governor Ted Strickland and I’m proud of that,” Strickland told a rally in Chillicothe as he warmed up the crowd ahead of a speech by Obama.
Strickland, whose battleground state is a focus of intensive campaigning by Obama and Republican John McCain, said he spoke directly to Obama about the right to bear arms in the Second Amendment.
“If you are a sportsman, if you are a gun owner, if you are someone that honors and respects the Second Amendment, you have nothing to fear from Barack Obama,” the Democratic governor said at a rally in the rural southern part of his state.
In June, after the Supreme Court struck down a strict gun control law in Washington, Obama said he supports the Second Amendment protection.
But he also added that he identifies with some living in inner cities who seek “common sense, effective safety measures” to try reduce gun violence in crime-ravaged communities.
In April, Obama’s comments to a closed-door fund-raiser in San Francisco saying small town voters would “cling” to their guns and religion because they were “bitter” over their economic conditions caused a storm of criticism.
McCain endeared himself to Americans in favor of the right to bear arms by picking Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, who enjoys hunting and who, according to former Tennessee Republican Sen. Fred Thompson, knows how to “field-dress a moose.”
Palin might differ with Strickland on which governor is a bigger champion of the Second Amendment.
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- Photo credit: Reuters/Jessica Rinaldi (Guns are seen inside a display case at the Cabela’s store in Fort Worth, Texas June 26, 2008)