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Public Safety Endangered by LD26 Republican Committee’s Raffle of an AR-15 Assault Rifle

TEMPE, ARIZ. – Today, Legislative District 26 Democratic Committee Chairman Randy Keating issued a statement condemning the Legislative District 26 Republican Committee’s raffle of an AR-15-style semi-automatic assault weapon just days before the anniversary of the Sandy Hook Elementary School mass shooting in Newtown, CT.  Less than a year ago, the Newtown shooter used an AR-15 Bushmaster to kill 20 young school children and 6 adults.   

“Raffling the AR-15 assault rifle, whose winner will be announced shortly before the first anniversary of the Sandy Hook mass shooting, is not only irresponsible, but grossly insensitive,” Keating said. “Arizona deserves much better from the LD26 Republican leadership, and that is why we have decided to help collect donations for one of Arizona’s leading gun safety groups, Arizonans for Gun Safety, until the December 14th, 2013 anniversary of the Newtown shooting. 

“An AR-15 assault rifle is a dangerous weapon in the wrong hands, it should not be a contest prize.  To the contrary, gun owners should undergo a background check and safety training before taking on the responsibility of an assault weapon.  Arizonans for Gun Safety will use the donated funds to educate the public on safe and responsible gun ownership practices to reduce unintentional gun injuries, gun thefts, and suicides,” said Hildy Saizow, President of Arizonans for Gun Safety.   

One hundred percent of the funds that are donated through the LD26 Democratic Committee’s special donation page will benefit Arizonans for Gun Safety’s gun violence prevention, education and advocacy programs. Arizonans for Gun Safety is a non-partisan, non-profit organization dedicated to reducing gun deaths and injuries in Arizona communities.

To donate, please visit

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commented 2014-01-02 18:50:28 -0700 · Flag
Hildy from AzGS made the point that weapons for mass killing should not be prizes in a contest, regardless of the excuse for timing with Newtown…
commented 2013-12-11 13:36:31 -0700 · Flag
The chairman of the Republican committee, Raymond Jones, said it’s pure coincidence and wasn’t malicious.

“That was a tragedy last year, there’s actually many tragedies throughout the world, throughout the U.S., different times of the year. The AR15 raffle has nothing to do with that anniversary,” Jones said.

While the person who won the rifle tonight wasn’t present, had they been, a federally licensed dealer could have submitted the background check on the spot so they could leave with the firearm. Jones said they held a similar raffle six months ago.
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