GOP Donor Unveils Plan to Make Republicans Regret Not Supporting an Assault Weapons Ban

Mitt Romney and Senator Marco Rubio in 2012, who both benefited from campaign support from Al Hoffman Jr. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Al Hoffman Jr., a Florida based real estate developer and major Republican backer, sent thousands of letters to his fellow GOP donors to recruit more clout for his effort to enact new gun laws in the wake of the Parkland school shooting. And Republicans should take notice.

Hoffman commands attention within the Republican Party. He served as finance chairman for the Republican National Committee and on the presidential campaigns of Mitt Romney, Senator Marco Rubio and several members of the Bush family.


President George W. Bush made him the ambassador to Portugal. Hoffman remains one of the GOP's most prominent donors.

But after the mass shooting in Hoffman's home state, his status as a major GOP donor may change. The attack at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School left 17 dead. The school in metropolitan Miami is not far from Hoffman's home in Palm Beach, Florida.

Hoffman vowed to withdraw all monetary or other support from any candidates or groups who fail to endorse renewing the ban on assault weapons. These kind of firearms were employed in almost every recent mass shooting.

In an interview with MSNBC, Hoffman stated:

I thought 'What can I do?' and finally a good friend said, 'Why don’t you start withholding checks until you find somebody who will support the advocacy for a gun legislation?'"

Hoffman notified a handful of Florida Republican officials first, including Governor Rick Scott and former Governor Jeb Bush. Scott, who cannot run for governor again due to term limits, plans to run for Senate in 2018 against incumbent Democratic Senator Bill Nelson.

Republicans have drawn criticism since the Parkland shooting over legislation that relaxed regulations on gun sales to the mentally ill, their history of donations from the National Rifle Association, and their response to this and other mass shootings. However Hoffman's campaign marks the first major push from within their own party.

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

It took a global pandemic and a national health crisis for the White House to temporarily restore daily press briefings after more than a year.

The purpose of the briefings is to update the public on the virus's spread and which potentially lifesaving measures are necessary for Americans to take in order to keep themselves and their families safe.

Keep reading... Show less
Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images; Samuel Corum/Getty Images

With Senator Bernie Sanders (D-VT) officially suspending his campaign on Wednesday, all signs are pointing to a showdown between President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden in November.

The pair's differing stances on how to curb the global pandemic that's resulted in a national health crisis in the United States are already highlighting just how much more effective—and levelheaded—a Biden presidency would be.

Keep reading... Show less
Walter McBride/Getty Images // Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

President Donald Trump's hatred of the late Republican Senator from Arizona, John McCain, was widely known even before McCain cast the decisive vote that saved the Affordable Care Act in 2017.

That hatred has only worsened since that vote, with Trump initially refusing to lower flags at half staff to honor him and even implying that McCain is in Hell.

Keep reading... Show less
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Pastor and Liberty University President Jerry Falwell Jr. came under fire late last month when he ordered faculty to return to the university and gave students the option to return, despite the mounting health crisis in the United States.

Surely enough, it wasn't long before students began falling ill.

Keep reading... Show less
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Presidential counselor Kellyanne Conway may be one of President Donald Trump's most vocal defenders, but her husband—Republican lawyer George Conway—is decidedly not.

After months of speaking out against Trump on Twitter, Conway and three other prominent Republican strategists formed Project Lincoln late last year.

Keep reading... Show less
@nowthisnews/Twitter

The World Health Organization (WHO) is responsible for providing guidance regarding international public health, so people around the world are looking to the WHO during this global pandemic.

Keep reading... Show less