Chipman's Backers On Judiciary Committee Took Money From Giffords

AP Photo/Andrew Harnik, File

Yesterday, Cam wrote about the story popping up everywhere about how Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee received donations from groups like the NRA. This, of course, was about as surprising as the press fawning over President Joe Biden eating ice cream. Yes, they got those donations but no, they didn’t make any difference.

But let’s say that receiving money from a group automatically makes your judgment suspect. Which would be worse, though? Receiving money from a group that takes a general stand with the Second Amendment, or taking it from a nominee’s former boss?

David Chipman worked for Giffords, after all, and plenty of people on the Senate Judiciary Committee received money directly from Chipman’s former employer, according to OpenSecrets.org.

Let’s start at the top, with Senator Dick Durbin. Durbin received $5,000 from Giffords, the maximum a multi-candidate PAC can donate. This is the chair of the judiciary committee taking money from the same outfit that employed the nominee he’s trying to get confirmed.

However, Durbin isn’t the only one, either.

Sens. Cory Booker ($2,500),  Chris Coons ($2,500), and Jon Ossoff ($5,000) all received substantial money from the organization. Sen, Amy Klobuchar also got money, but only a whopping $5, and that actually from an individual and not the organization itself, so I think we can dismiss that particular sum.

Now, let’s ask the question again. If donations make one’s judgment suspect, then how is it a direct donation from the former employer of a nominee is no cause for concern?

Honestly, this was easily the dumbest tactic anti-Second Amendment groups could have thought of. And understand, I only looked at one group, the one that Chipman worked for because I see that relationship as far more problematic than more generic gun control groups giving money to candidates. In fact, I found Booker and Ossoff getting $10,000 from Brady and Durbin getting another $5,000…but since Brady didn’t pay Chipman, it’s somewhat less relevant than Giffords donating money.

Again, this was Chipman’s employer. He worked for them for years, enough so that you have to believe that they have similar opinions on guns. They would have a vested interest in putting him in a position of power as director of the ATF. If any political donation was going to be suspect, it would be the ones from an organization with such direct ties with the candidate.

Now, if the Republicans on the committee should have to recuse themselves, as I’ve seen some suggest, then so do Durbin, Booker, Coons, and Ossoff.

See, I’m not buying into the idea that when the NRA donates money, it’s dirty and underhanded, but when Giffords donates it, it’s pure as the driven snow. That’s not how this works. I can find plenty of money flowing to Senate Judiciary Committee Democrats from anti-gun groups, more than enough to justify someone questioning their judgment.

However, let me ask you this: Is it more likely that this is some kind of a bribe and they would really be pro-gun without it, or is it likely they got the money because they were anti-Second Amendment in the first place?

Obviously, it’s the latter. None of these people ever expressed a pro-gun position in their lives so far as I can find, so it seems that the donation came because of their position on the issue, not in an effort to change it.

Yet that also holds true on the other side. These were all people who started as pro-Second Amendment. That’s why they got their donations.

Honestly, this was the lamest attempt at defending Chipman I’ve seen yet, and it’s the one most likely to be turned back on his supporters on the committee. Especially considering his work history.

Now, can we knock off this stupidity and focus on just how bad a candidate this guy is?