This undated frame grab from a political ad shows gubernatorial candidate and current Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp, left, pointing a shotgun in the direction of a young man. Kemp, a candidate in a crowded Republican primary field, caused an uproar with the campaign video.
Photo: Kemp for Governor via AP
Photo: Kemp for Governor via AP

Why Georgia Republicans are shifting to the right on guns

A few months after a mass shooting at a Florida high school reignited a nationwide debate over gun control, Georgia Republicans have aggressively moved in the opposite direction.

One GOP candidate for governor aired an ad showing him pointing a shotgun toward his daughter’s suitor, and he has also called for a sales tax holiday for guns and ammunition over the July Fourth holiday.

Another contender, a military veteran, was branded a traitor for suggesting raising minimum age limits. A leading candidate for Georgia’s No. 2 job challenged his top rival to a shootout.

The tighter embrace of firearms by GOP candidates comes as Democrats intensify calls for gun control, and polls show an increasing number of conservatives favor tightening firearms laws. But Republicans seeking primary votes from staunch conservatives in the May 22 race say their voters are demanding strong pro-gun stances.

More: Georgia Republicans shift to right on guns

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