Colorado: NRA Member Pens Piece Supporting Udall

Posted September 22, 2008 at 6:57pm

A Republican and endowment life member of the National Rifle Association who is pledging to vote for Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) for president has penned a column in the Summit Daily News explaining why he intends to vote for Democratic Rep. Mark Udall for Senate over GOP nominee and former Rep. Bob Schaffer.

John Smeltzer, a former senior manager in the Colorado Division of Wildlife, said in his opinion piece that Udall is the better choice on sportsman issues. The Schaffer campaign quickly noted that the Republican — not Udall — has been endorsed by the NRA.

Udall “has been more proactive, more supportive and more attentive to issues we sportsmen care about,” Smeltzer wrote. “In fact, Congressman Udall’s opponent fails to even address sportsman’s issues on his website and has shown no interest in understanding or addressing the issues we care about so much.”

Schaffer campaign spokesman Dick Wadhams responded by noting that Smeltzer and his compatriots are retired state employees — and that state employees tend to be more supportive of Democratic candidates. Wadhams also charged that Udall’s record on firearms issues is weak.

“Every two years, the Democratic candidate — whoever it is — trots out some self-proclaimed sportsman to support their candidacy,” Wadhams said. “The problem is that Boulder liberal Udall has one of the most anti-gun records in Congress.”