A Lap Dog is a member of Congress that takes treats from the corporate gun lobby AND blocks progress on expanding Brady background checks. The rating applies to members of the 114th Congress.
The Lap Dog label is based on two basic criteria:
1. Did you support legislative efforts to expand background checks on gun sales?
2. Did you take money from the corporate gun lobby?
Senators are rated based on how they voted on the Manchin-Toomey amendment legislation in April of 2013 that would have expanded background checks on all online and gun show sales.*
- A “Thumbs Up” rating means the senator voted for the Manchin-Toomey amendment.
- A “Thumbs Down” rating means the senator voted against the Manchin-Toomey amendment.
House Representatives are rated based on whether or not they have signed on to co-sponsor pending legislation to expand Brady background checks. (H.R. 3411 or H.R. 1217, 114th Congress).
- A “Thumbs Up” rating means the representative is a current co-sponsor on pending legislation to expand Brady background checks.
- A “Thumbs Down” rating means the representative is not a current co-sponsor on pending legislation to expand Brady background checks.
The corporate gun lobby is defined to include: the National Rifle Association, the National Shooting Sports Foundation and the Gun Owners of America.
Total money contributions from the corporate gun lobby, dating back to 1990 for the 114th Congress, are based on a dollar sign ($) scale of one to five, and defined as the following:
1 dollar sign equals: $1.00 - $10,000.00
2 dollar signs equal: $10,001.00 - $20,000.00
3 dollar signs equal: $20,001.00 - $45,000.00
4 dollar signs equal: $45,001.00 - $65,000.00
5 dollar signs equal: $65,001.00 and above.
* One Freshman Senator, Senator Gary Peters (D-MI) cosponsored H.R. 1565 to expand Brady background checks in the 113th Congress and six Freshman Senators, Senators Cory Gardner (R-CO), Tom Cotton (R-AR), Steve Daines (R-MT), Bill Cassidy (R-LA), James Lankford (R-OK), and Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) did not cosponsor H.R. 1565 to expand Brady background checks in the U.S. House in the 113th Congress. At the time of scorecard release there was not pending legislation in the U.S. Senate to expand Brady background checks.
For Manchin-Toomey amendment vote.
For H.R. 3411 Co-Sponsors.
For H.R. 1217 Co-Sponsors.
For gun lobby contribution amounts.
(Accessed July 2015)