An advocacy group founded by Michael Bloomberg is out with a chilling new ad designed to get three Republican senators behind legislation that would expand restrictions on domestic abusers from buying guns.
The ad by Everytown for Gun Safety contains a warning about the coming scene, in which a man kicks down the door of his ex-wife's house, grabs their crying son, and pulls out a gun as the woman calls 911 and tries to stop him. He points the gun at her head, and the ad cuts to a black screen with the message "Stop gun violence against women" before the sound of a gunshot is heard.
The advocacy group is running the ad on cable TV in Washington and on networks in three states, urging viewers to contact GOP Sens. Jeff Flake of Arizona, Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire and Dean Heller of Nevada to support a bill by Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn.
The legislation would expand federal law to include dating partners, individuals under a restraining order and convicted stalkers from buying or owning a gun. Current law already prevents people convicted of domestic abuse from buying or owning a gun.
The NRA is opposed to Klobuchar's bill. The ad's release comes ahead of a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing Wednesday to examine next steps in the Violence Against Women Act. President Obama signed expanded protections under the law last year.
Gun legislation has been met with strong opposition from Republicans in Congress and some conservative Democrats. The Democratic-led Senate failed last year to pass a bill that would have expanded background checks on potential gun buyers. Ayotte, Flake and Heller voted against the background checks proposal.
Bloomberg, the former mayor of New York City, is planning to spend $50 million this year to help Everytown challenge the NRA and to mobilize voters to back gun-control efforts.