Fox News isn’t exactly known for siding with President Barack Obama. But on Sunday, host Chris Wallace took on the National Rifle Association’s assertion that the president is an “elite hypocrite” for allowing his daughters to have Secret Service protection, telling the gun lobby’s Executive Vice President, Wayne LaPierre, that it is “ridiculous” for him to claim the first daughters do not need a higher level of protection than the average American child.
During the exchange on Fox News Sunday, Wallace played a clip of the recent NRA advertisement in question, which criticizes Obama’s opposition to placing armed security guards in schools across the nation. Wallace then asked LaPierre if the organization truly believes every child in America faces, on average, a security threat similar to that of the Obama children. After LaPierre said he did, Wallace incredulously said “that’s ridiculous and you know it, sir!”
Wallace didn’t stop there. Specifically taking on the allegation that only the “elite class” can currently obtain the security protection they need, the host pointed out that LaPierre himself relies on armed bodyguards.
“Does that make you an elite, out-of-touch elite, because you have security?” Wallace asked, noting that LaPierre showed up for their interview with personal bodyguards. “This idea of an elite class is just nonsense."
Wallace went on to argue that the NRA’s armed security plan would not protect vulnerable children “in the shopping mall, in the movie theater, on the street.”
The NRA has fiercely opposed the Obama administration’s recent package of proposals intended to combat gun violence. The NRA -- the nation’s most influential pro-gun organization -- has maintained that an assault weapons ban and even universal criminal background checks would not increase public safety, and would in fact infringe on Americans’ constitutional right to own firearms.
Instead, the NRA has insisted lawmakers should, in addition to the armed guards plan, focus on enforcing current laws.
Ashley covers U.S. politics for the International Business Times, with a focus on civil liberties, women's issues and campaign finance. Her work has also appeared in The...