Bradford County Commissioner Mark Smith spoke out against former U.S. Rep. Mark Critz (PA-12) in regards to Critz’s support from the National Rifle Association (NRA).
His criticism in the wake of the recent shooting at the Delaware Valley Charter School in Philadelphia.
“Mark Critz said he was ‘proud’ to receive the support of the NRA, an organization that has opposed legislation against common sense gun reforms like universal background checks and closing the gun show loophole. Strong universal background checks could prevent criminals, terrorists, and the dangerously mentally ill from getting their hands on firearms,” Smith said.
Critz did say when he first received the support back in 2012 that he was “proud” to have it.
“I will continue to oppose any effort to take away the fundamental right to bear arms that is guaranteed under the Constitution as long as I am fortunate to serve the people of Western Pennsylvania in Congress,” Critz said.
Critz has also previously proposed pro-gun legislation. In 2011, he introduced a bill that would allow people to hold on to up to $3,000 worth of firearms during bankruptcy proceedings with Rep. Tim Griffin (R-Ark.) acting as the bill’s co-sponser. Critz said that his reasoning for the bill was that he believed that everyone should have the right to buy and own firearms, even those that are facing bankruptcy.
It was because of this proposed legislation that the NRA gave Critz an “A plus” rating, while Governor Tom Corbett only has an “A” rating. The difference between an “A plus” and an “A” rating is that an “A” rating is earned by Congressmen who vote for and support the NRA, while an “A plus” rating encompasses both vocal support and legislative actions for the organization.
The NRA said that it has thrown its support behind Critz because he “has a proven record of defending the Second Amendment.”
“The recent school shooting in Philadelphia was heartbreaking,” Smith said. “It stands as a stark reminder of the need for common sense gun reform in Pennsylvania. Growing up in a household where firearms were owned and respected, I realize common sense gun reform is a necessity. We can no longer stand on the sidelines as tragedies like this occur in our Commonwealth and across the nation.”
Also in the Democratic field for the Lieutenant Governor nomination are State Senator Mike Stack (D-Philadelphia), Harrisburg City Councilman Brad Koplinski and Brenda Alton. State Rep. Brandon Neuman is also expected to jump into the race.