Sportsmen Coalition leader admits some in Capitol crowd were intimidating

There was a fair amount of chanting and fuming among gun owners today, starting when the first busloads of casually dressed firearms enthusiasts arrived at the Capitol around 8:45.

Lawmakers who were recognized — and even other Capitol workers wearing shirts and ties — were stopped and asked if they understood the details of the 139 pages of legalese so much better explained in the Office of Legislative Research report on SB 1160.

Bob Crook, executive director of the Coalition of Connecticut Sportsmen, was asked about the intimidation factor today:

“Anytime you get a crowd up here it has to be a little intimidating. These guys are upset because they’ve been up here in the thousands before and obviously nobody has listened to them… We never had a public hearing on the assault weapon ban. There was never any real language…The gun functions just like every hunting rifle that’s made. It’s semi-automatic…so when they talk about assault weapons, they don’t know what they’re talking about…They’re going to vote on this stuff today and probably pass it, but it’s not over today. I’ve been doing gun laws since the ’80s. It just keeps going on and on…This is a plethora of bills that have failed in the past…based upon emotion, not based on fact… “