Ohio2006 Blog

News, analysis, and comments on Ohio elections.

Wednesday, October 4

Gov: Blackwell (R) to Tour SE Ohio with White Supremacist Gun Fanatic

Kudos to Joseph at Plunderbund for bringing this to everyone's attention!

The Cincinnati Enquirer political blog reports today that gubernatorial candidate Ken Blackwell (R-Cincinnati) departs tomorrow morning for a three-day bus tour of Southeastern Ohio with Larry Pratt, President of the Gun Owners of America.

Just who is Larry Pratt? Joseph provides this rundown from the Southern Poverty Law Center:
Larry Pratt, a gun rights absolutist whose Gun Owners of America (GOA) has been described as "eight lanes to the right" of the National Rifle Association, may well be the person who brought the concept of citizen militias to the radical right.

In 1990, Pratt wrote a book, Armed People Victorious, based on his study of "citizen defense patrols" used in Guatemala and the Philippines against Communist rebels — patrols that came to be known as death squads for their murderous brutality. Picturing these groups in rosy terms, Pratt advocated similar militias in the United States — an idea that finally caught on when he was invited for a meeting of 160 extremists, including many famous white supremacists, in 1992. It was at that meeting, hosted in Colorado by white supremacist minister Pete Peters, that the contours of the militia movement were laid out.

Pratt, whose GOA has grown since its 1975 founding to some 150,000 members today, hit the headlines in a big way when his associations with Peters and other professional racists were revealed, convincing arch-conservative Pat Buchanan to eject him as a national co-chair of Buchanan's 1996 presidential campaign. The same year, it emerged that Pratt was a contributing editor to a periodical of the anti-Semitic United Sovereigns of America, and that his GOA had donated money to a white supremacist attorney's group. Pratt is today close to the extremist Constitution Party and its radical theology.

A very scary person indeed. And this is Blackwell's companion for his bus tour and "cowboy shoot."


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