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NRA endorses Capito in W.Va.’s U.S. Senate race

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The National Rifle Association supports Rep. Shelley Moore Capito in the race to represent West Virginia in the U.S. Senate.

The NRA’s political organization announced its endorsement for Capito, R-W.Va., Wednesday, giving her an “A” rating, the rating reserved for “a solidly pro-gun legislator.”

“Shelley has consistently fought to preserve and improve self-defense laws, gun rights and our hunting heritage for West Virginians and all Americans,” said Chris W. Cox, chairman of the NRA’s political action committee.

“She will strongly oppose any attempt by President Obama and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg to restrict their freedom.”

Capito has received endorsements in the past from the NRA. The congresswoman thanked the organization for its support while the campaign criticized her Democratic opponent, West Virginia Secretary of State Natalie Tennant.

“The outcome of this election is critical to preserving our Second Amendment freedom, and I promise that no one is going to fight harder for our constitutional rights,” Capito said in a statement.

“While others talk the talk, I walk the walk. I’m humbled and honored that the National Rifle Association is supporting me.” While the organization typically endorses Republicans in many states, the NRA has West Virginia Democrats in the past. U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., consistently received the support of the organization until he championed increased background checks on certain gun purchases in the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre.

Capito and many other lawmakers opposed Manchin’s proposal, which failed to pass the Senate. The NRA blasted Manchin for the plan, spending $100,000 on television advertisements in West Virginia bashing the senator.

Manchin fired back, spending $100,000 of his own on television ads touting his support for gun ownership.

The Capito campaign accuses Tennant of shifting her position on the proposal, first supporting it and then opposing it.

Tennant’s campaign says that Tennant — who frequently fires the musket she carried from her days as West Virginia University’s Mountaineer mascot while on the campaign trail — opposes expanding federal background checks…

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