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NRA defends ad with Obama daughters. Right or wrong? (+video)

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National Rifle Association CEO Wayne LaPierre defended his organization’s controversial ad mentioning President Obama’s daughters during an appearance Thursday on NBC’s “Today.”

“It wasn’t about the president’s daughters,” Mr. LaPierre said at the end of a segment otherwise devoted to the NRA’s views on the president’s gun-control proposals. “What it is about is how to keep children safe.”

Well, in a narrow sense that assertion might be a tough sell. As we discussed Wednesday, the 30-second, online ad that’s roiled Washington begins with the words, “Are the president’s kids more important yours?”

It goes on to charge that Mr. Obama is an “elitist hypocrite” because he’s skeptical of the NRA’s proposal for more armed guards at schools, yet Sasha and Malia are themselves protected by armed guards.

It ends with a graphic of Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D) of California, and NBC’s David Gregory protected by two armed guys in SWAT gear.

“Protection for their kids and gun-free zones for ours,” it intones.

However, there is a longer cut of this ad that surrounds the presidential-children reference with more material, so maybe LaPierre was talking about that.

This 4-1/2-minute version starts by talking about how banks, the White House, and Capitol Hill are all protected by armed guards. Then it expends quite a bit of time on media folks decrying the NRA’s armed-guard-in-every-school proposal. At one point, somebody even charges the group is on “Planet Bizarro.”

Then it abruptly switches tone. “The media speaks for elites. America speaks for itself,” flashes on-screen. Then it begins referring to a number of state programs that finance and place school guards.

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