San Diego County Gun Owners (SDCGO), a Santee-based political action committee promoting Second Amendment rights, is accusing the Del Far Fairgrounds board of directors with a bias against gun ownership and the popular Crossroads of the West gun show, held at the fairgrounds, based on the directors’ past political contributions to anti-Second Amendment candidates and initiatives.
The nine-member fairgrounds board, officially known as the 22nd District Agricultural Association, is appointed by the state governor to oversee activities at the state-owned fairgrounds. The board has announced it will discuss at the September 11th meeting extending into the future the contract for the two-day gun show that has been held at the publicly owned fairgrounds 5 times a year for the past 29 years. Crossroads has signed a contract to offer the gun show through the end of this year.
In public comments made at the Aug. 14 fairgrounds board meeting, SDCGO officials said previous campaign contributions to political candidates by fair board members indicate a prejudice against guns, the gun show and the Second Amendment.
“We believe who you’re writing checks to, who you give money to, reveals a lot about your priorities and interests,” said Wendy Hauffen, an firearms instructor and SDCGO member. “Campaign finance reports since 2012 paint a picture of your support of political candidates who are anti-gun, which indicates your bias against guns and, therefore, you will not be fair and objective in your decision about the future of the gun show at the fairgrounds.”
In her comments, Hauffen identified by name fairgrounds board members’ previous election contributions, including: Lee Haydu’s donation to support Proposition 63, a gun ammunition control ballot measure sponsored by Lt. Govenor Gavin Newsom and passed by voters in November 2016; Frederick Schenk’s donation to the failed U.S. presidential campaign of Hillary Clinton and Democrat Rep. Scott Peters; David Watson’s donation to former San Diego Mayor Bob Filner; Kathlyn Mead’s donation to Rep. Juan Vargas; Lisa Barkett’s donation to Rep. John Garamendi; Steve Shewmaker’s donation to Gov. Jerry Brown, “who has signed many anti-Second Amendment bills into law,” said Hauffen.
“We urge you to follow the law, not paint thousands of law-abiding citizens as undesirable and bad, not go down the path of intolerance and vote to allow the continuation of the gun show on September 11th, despite your record of political contributions,” Hauffen said.
Founded in 2015, the San Diego County Gun Owners is a registered political action committee (FPPC ID #1379388) and advocacy organization focused on organizing the gun industry and community and protecting the U.S. Constitution’s Second Amendment right to bear arms. With a membership exceeding 1,000 individuals, the PAC provides news and information on new gun laws and Second Amendment advocacy. Its sponsored events include gun safety classes, small gun shows, sporting clay shoots, social gatherings and pistol, rifle and shotgun experiences taught by professional instructors. For more information, visit www.sandiegocountygunowners.com.