The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

State and Nation

May 3, 2013

Fresh off victory, NRA holds convention in Houston

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Fresh off a huge victory over President Barack Obama on gun control, the message from the National Rifle Association is clear: The fight has just begun.

The powerful gun rights lobby gathers in Houston this weekend for its annual convention and organizers anticipate a rollicking, Texas-sized party — both to celebrate the victory in Washington and recharge for more political struggles as gun control advocates tally their own successes in states around the country.

"If you are an NRA member, you deserve to be proud," Wayne LaPierre, the NRA's brash, no-compromises chief executive wrote last week to the organization's 5 million members, telling them they "exemplify everything that's good and right about America."

The NRA couldn't have picked a friendlier place to stage its annual event. More than 70,000 people are expected to attend the three-day "Stand and Fight"-themed convention, which includes a gun trade show, political rally and strategy meeting.

Texas, with its frontier image and fierce sense of independence, is one of the strongest gun rights states in the country. More than 500,000 people are licensed to carry concealed handguns, including Gov. Rick Perry, who once bragged about shooting a coyote during a morning jog.

Concealed handguns are allowed in the state Capitol, where simply showing a license allows armed visitors to bypass metal detectors.

Friday's big event is a political forum with speeches from several state and national conservative leaders, including Perry, former GOP vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin, former Pennsylvania senator and presidential candidate Rick Santorum and Sen. Ted Cruz, a Republican Texas firebrand who has become one of the top tea party voices in Washington since being elected last year. LaPierre speaks to the convention Saturday before the "Stand and Fight" rally at night.

Text Only
State and Nation
Photos


Poll

Do you believe America will ever make another manned flight to the moon or another planet?

Yes
No
     View Results
Facebook
AP Video
Official: Air Algerie Flight 'probably Crashed' TSA Administrator on Politics and Flight Bans Raw: National Guard Helps Battle WA Wildfires Raw: Ukraine's Donetsk Residents Flee Senators Push to End Hamas Threat in Cease-Fire A Young Victim's Premonition, Hug Before MH17 U.N. School in Gaza Hit by Israeli Strike Raw: Deadly Storm Hits Virginia Campground Officials Warn of Avoidable Death in Hot Cars Death Penalty Expert: 'This is a Turning Point' House Committee at Odds Over Obama Lawsuit Raw: MH17 Victim's Bodies Arrive in Netherlands Raw: UN School Used As Shelter Hit by Tank Shell Raw: Gunmen Attack Iraqi Prison Convoy Plane Leaves Ukraine With More Crash Victims The Rock Brings Star Power to Premiere Raw: Families Travel to Taiwan Plane Crash Site Arizona Execution Takes Almost Two Hours Crash Kills Teen Pilot Seeking World Record
Twitter Updates
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Stocks
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Business Marquee