HARTFORD -- A war of words has erupted between two Connecticut lawmakers and the National Rifle Association.
"The idea that the NRA should be recognized as a voice for gun safety is ridiculous," Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin said Tuesday night.
Bronin firing back at the NRA, said the organization does more to oppose progress and prevent collaborative dialogue about gun safety than any other organization in the country.
The back and forth between the two started earlier this week when Bronin called on Connecticut lawmakers to rip any mention of the NRA out of state laws.
Right now, Connecticut residents who want to get a firearm permit needs to go through a basic safety training course and get certified. State law names NRA training as a valid course for firearms instruction.
NRA ILA spokesperson Catherine Mortensen, responded to Bronin's call with the following statement:
“No organization in the world does more to promote the safe and responsible use of firearms than the NRA. The NRA’s Basics of Pistol Shooting course is the best training available for anyone seeking to carry a concealed firearm for self-protection. By eliminating the NRA training and standards for Connecticut’s permit holders, Mayor Bronin is putting politics above the safety of Connecticut citizens.”
The NRA said Connecticut is one of 15 states that recognizes NRA training.
"If the NRA had its way we wouldn't be permitting in the first place,” said Bronin, “this is an organization that opposes universal background checks despite the fact that overwhelming majority of Americans and even a large number of NRA members support universal background checks."
This fight isn't just Bronin's.
Malloy also came out Monday and agreed with Bronin’s call, even going on to say the NRA has developed into a “terrorist organization.”
"They act quite frankly in some cases as a terrorist organization,” said Malloy. “You want to make safer guns? We will boycott your company. That's who they are. That's what they do."
Malloy said the NRA is a different organization than what it used to be.
"The NRA today is a far cry from the NRA that in 1999 said that teachers shouldn't carry weapons in schools,” said Malloy. “Or in the 90’s said we should have universal background checks. They have in essence become a terrorist organization."
Jennifer Baker from the NRA, released the following statement in regards to Malloy's terrorist remarks:
“ The NRA is comprised of over five million law-abiding citizens many of whom are teachers, doctors, policeman, farmers , moms and dads residing in Connecticut. So let’s be clear Governor Malloy just called tens of thousands of his constituents terrorists.
Voters are fed up with politicians who engage in political stunts and childish name calling rather than serious policy discussions aimed at making our schools and communities safer. A perfect example is the absurd political stunt to remove NRA trainers from the permitting process in Connecticut. No organization in the world does more to promote the safe and responsible use of firearms than the NRA.
The NRA’s Basics of Pistol Shooting course is the best training available for anyone seeking to carry a concealed firearm for self-protection. Public safety isn’t improved by eliminating the NRA training and standards for Connecticut’s permit holders or by calling people who disagree with you terrorists.
NRA members love our children and want them to be safe just as much as anyone else we just disagree that punishing law-abiding citizens who want to exercise their constitutional right to self-defense is the way to achieve that goal.”