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Bloomberg Donates to Virginia Democrat with Pro-Gun Ties

Michael Bloomberg / AP
• November 4, 2013 4:23 pm

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New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is backing Kathleen Murphy, a Democrat challenger for a seat in the Virginia House of Delegates, even as the same candidate campaigns with Democrats with strong Second Amendment records.

The Daily Beast’s Eleanor Clift reports that Bloomberg has put up six figures in support of Murphy’s campaign to unseat Republican Del. Barbara Comstock.

Comstock has a top rating from the National Rifle Association, and Murphy started badgering Bloomberg’s people in New York months ago to seek their help in a race that could turn on commonsense gun reform. She was thrilled to receive $100,000 from Bloomberg’s PAC, directed contributions from Bloomberg’s PAC, and other donors to Virginia delegate candidates. At an event in Washington over the weekend, a friend warned her to be careful on the gun issue and not to push her advocacy too far. "I’m 65 years old, and I’m not planning on running for Congress or president," she said. "I believe what I believe. I lost my brother to gun violence. I’m not backing down on this issue."

Even as she draws support from arguably the most high-profile gun control advocate in the country, Murphy has campaigned with other Democrats who have policy records that are friendlier to gun owners.

U.S. Sen. Mark Warner (D., Va.) has endorsed Murphy’s candidacy and was a guest at an up to $2,500-per-plate fundraiser for her campaign.

He has also bucked the Democratic Party line on gun control, voting against legislation to impose an assault weapons ban and a limit on magazine sizes.

Warner has an "A" rating from the National Rifle Association.

Murphy has criticized Comstock for voting for legislation that prevented the release of private handgun permit information. But the legislation passed both houses of the Virginia legislature with bipartisan support.

Comstock has also supported legislation cracking down on "straw purchasers" of firearms and was endorsed by the Virginia Police Benevolent Association.

Published under: Michael Bloomberg