Beck’s NRA Throwdown With Norquist

Sometimes it’s hard to keep the peace entirely within the Big Tent of movement conservatism, ain’t it? One long-simmering feud, between Islamophobes and the powerful Tax Commissar Grover Norquist, is now spilling over into another important part of the Movement, the National Rifle Association. Glenn Beck, egged on by famed Islamophobe Frank Gaffney, has demanded that NRA members reject Norquist’s re-election to the Board of Directors for the organization, or Beck himself will take a walk. And according to Beck’s website, The Blaze, Wayne Lapierre is scrambling to placate the fiery wingnut gabber:

Beck said he agrees with Norquist’s tax policy, but “when it comes to the Muslim Brotherhood and Islam, this guy is on the wrong side whether he knows it or not.”

“I don’t believe he’s out trying to destroy America, but his efforts and his work will lead to the destruction of America,” Beck declared. “Yesterday I spent about an hour on the phone with Wayne LaPierre at the NRA. … They reacted immediately because of your phone calls. Hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of phone calls have apparently come in.”

“I honestly expected some sort of defense. But [Wayne LaPierre] said, ‘…I want you [and] your audience to know, I take our members voice’s seriously,’” Beck continued. “When you called, they went into action. And they said that they were opening up an ethics investigation on Grover. They said they’re going to get down to the bottom of this once and for all. Grover denies all of these allegations.”

In case you’re wondering what this is all about, Norquist was trying to organize American Muslims into a GOP constituency group well before 9/11, and has worked closely for years with the Council on American-Islamic Relations, the mild-mannered group Islamophobes persist in damning as a front for the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas. On top of everything else, he’s married to a Palestinian Muslim, and he’s not the kind of guy to back down from a fight.

I’m sure LaPierre is freaked out by the whole thing, but I can’t imagine him dumping Grover. As for Beck, I guess he can join up with the Gun Owners of America, the wacky group that considers the NRA a bunch of squishy sellouts.

Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore, a Monthly contributing editor, is a columnist for the Daily Intelligencer, New York magazine’s politics blog, and the managing editor for the Democratic Strategist.