In a micro-targeting tactic that would make Republican strategist Karl Rove proud, Democrat Barack Obama's campaign is seeking inroads among politically liberal and moderate gun owners in Florida -- despite Republican John McCain's endorsement from the National Rifle Association.
Marking the opening of muzzleloading deer season, Ray Schoenke, president of the American Hunters and Shooters Association, campaigned on Obama's behalf this weekend in Orlando, Tavares, Lakeland, Ocala, Micanopy and Palatka. According to the group's web site, "The American Hunters and Shooters Association (AHSA) is a national grassroots organization committed to safe and responsible gun ownership. We are a mainstream group of hunters who are looking to belong to a gun owners association that doesn't have a radical agenda."
Schoenke's itinerary drew a testy response from Bill Bunting, a gun rights activist and chairman of the Pasco County Republican Party, who assailed Obama's "dismal Second Amendment rights record." The NRA's Political Victory Fund has spent more than $2.3 million opposing Obama, according to the Associated Press.