Reid and LaPierre in 2010: Soldiers in arms

Frankly, I had forgotten, until reminded on Twitter (of course!), how strongly pro-gun Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid was when the Clark County Shooting Park opened in March 2010.

Standing next to the NRA's Wayne LaPierre, Reid talked of him like a soldier in arms ("We have stood together in so many battles over the years.")  and bragged of past, present and future efforts to oppose the assault weapons ban.

I should have included Reid's remarks in my earlier post on Reid and guns -- hat tip to NRO's Jonah Goldberg and commentator Jim Downs for the reminder. Look at the intensity of Reid's language at the parks' unveiling:

“As many of you know, I grew up in Searchlight, in a home surrounded by the desert.  Our dusty town didn’t have a high school, we didn’t have a grocery store, and there wasn’t even a place to buy a bullet.

“So it was a big deal when I could go out with my brother and father to shoot at targets out in open land.  We’d take turns using our bolt-action .22-caliber rifle.  Now I have eight guns, but I still have that .22, and it’s still my favorite.

“I have passed my love of shooting to my own grandchildren.  My grandson Mason has come to love shooting sports just as much as his grandfather.

“Many of you have similar stories from your childhood – stories of bonding with your parents and siblings while shooting targets or shooting dinner – and stories of bonding with your children and grandchildren.

“Now your families and mine are fortunate to have such an impressive place to learn the skills of sport shooting – to learn the importance of safe shooting – to exercise our Second-Amendment rights – and to celebrate our Western heritage.

“I am so pleased that Wayne LaPierre is with us today.  We have stood together in so many battles over the years.

“Just a few years ago we worked to protect our gun manufacturers from junk lawsuits.  And as a result of that legislation, America’s gun companies are still America’s gun companies.  That good law protected thousands of good jobs.

“Wayne and I also stood together to defeat the so-called Assault Weapons Ban.  I voted against the ban when it was first proposed, I voted against it when folks tried to renew it, and I will continue to oppose it. 

“As you can imagine, my Democratic colleagues are not always thrilled with my votes on gun issues, but I tell them this: Guns aren’t a political issue for me.

“Guns are something I grew up with.  Guns are part of what it means to live in the West.  We hunt, we shoot and we do it responsibly.  It’s who we are.

“That’s why it’s so gratifying to see this decade-long effort come to fruition.  And it’s just as rewarding to share it with those who made it possible: John, Art, Chas, Don, Tom – thank you for this gift you have given to the people of Nevada.

“This beautiful park is more than anything I could have dreamed of as a little boy in the desert. 

“I can’t wait to bring my grandchildren here and see them shoot the same rifle their grandfather and great-grandfather shared.  It’s a family tradition that’s meaningful to me, and a Nevada tradition in which we can all be proud.”