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DirtyDigz

The NRA Field Coordinator for all NJ - Christian Ragosta

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I had a nice talk yesterday with Christian Ragosta, the NRA employee overseeing political action in NY, NJ, CT & PA. He’s been in that role for 3 years. Here’s the gist of our discussion:

  • FYI, state reps (like Melissa, who was over S. Jersey only previously but now covers the whole state since Riccardo left) are contractors. Melissa has performed this role for the NRA under prior years’ contracts in other states with great success. Her job is to harness volunteerism up to the election with the goal of pushing critical support to pro-2A candidates to help them win. Obviously, that also builds a larger volunteer pool for subsequent post-election activities.
  • I’m personally not concerned Riccardo is no longer representing N. Jersey – Melissa sounds more experienced, higher energy and more reliable (hearing that from multiple people btw).
  • Both Christian and Melissa will be at SAFE Conference – in case you’re going and have questions – talk to them!  And if you're not going, they are both open to calls. Christian was quite gracious - took time to answer all my questions, and was direct about saying, "I don't know" to the very few he couldn't answer (which I appreciate, I prefer to not get bamboozled). He sounded like a "straight-shooter" - pardon the pun!
  • Apparently, NJ politicians are notoriously “slow” to return their NRA questionnaires – those are used by the NRA to provide scores, assess investment strategy, launch support, etc. That has been a frustration to the team at NRA HQ. However, to be clear: the NRA is well aware of “sensitivities” in states like NJ where demographics lean left and politicians are hesitant about where they align themselves.
  • That said, the NRA WILL be doing advertising for Kim Guadagno regardless – it’s obvious to all that she’s the best choice from a 2A perspective.  So, the myth that the NRA won’t work on her behalf unless she gives full-throated support for the 2A is apparently just that – a myth!
  • As far as the relative “radio silence” of the Guadagno campaign – I’m not going to lie...it is apparently a shared concern! And the absence of support from the Republican Gov’s Association is an even bigger concern. However, the NRA is in constant contact with her team and will be pushing forward regardless.
  • At NRA HQ, they have already identified which pols are in districts with narrow margins where grassroots efforts could be critical... and that’s where they’ll focus volunteer efforts. Christian’s point: “We’re not going to waste our volunteers’ time – we’re going to use them in races that can be won.” Makes sense to me!
  • They’re well aware of timing – and things will be happening soon... targeted emails to NJ NRA members, etc. (...the kinds of communications I’ve personally been waiting to see...)
  • Keep in mind (and this was a good reminder for me as well), voters have VERY short memories! Hence, you generally don’t see significant election activity until the immediate run up to Election Day – but once it starts, it’s at a frenetic pace.  They will need “all hands on deck” for phone banks and door-to-door canvassing. So, yes, the timing is tight... but they’re well aware of the timelines and confident they will pull off a strong effort – but only WITH OUR HELP!
  • He made a pleasant (and quite fair, I thought) reminder that the NRA is not a Fortune 100 corporation... it’s a grassroots organization. That said, if you haven’t passed your contact info to them yet, please do so... and when the email comes asking for your help, DO try to drop everything and help out!
  • I was told if you passed your info to Riccardo already, it’s in their database.
  • On a final note, Christian was very complimentary of ANJRPC and CNJFO – said they’re working very cooperatively together... so perhaps that also shatters some of the “all these 2A groups do is fight each other”-myths as well.

I’m not a naïve person by any means... but I felt pretty good about the discussion. Yes, they have limited staffing... but they’re approaching it very strategically, and they’re in it for the long haul... now we need to step up! If you have further questions, I suggest you talk to them directly. I'm merely sharing a synopsis of my conversation - I would encourage you to have your own conversation with them if you want more info.

 

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34 minutes ago, Mrs. Peel said:

I had a nice talk yesterday with Christian Ragosta, the NRA employee overseeing political action in NY, NJ, CT & PA. He’s been in that role for 3 years. Here’s the gist of our discussion:

  • FYI, state reps (like Melissa, who was over S. Jersey only previously but now covers the whole state since Riccardo left) are contractors. Melissa has performed this role for the NRA under prior years’ contracts in other states with great success. Her job is to harness volunteerism up to the election with the goal of pushing critical support to pro-2A candidates to help them win. Obviously, that also builds a larger volunteer pool for subsequent post-election activities.
  • I’m personally not concerned Riccardo is no longer representing N. Jersey – Melissa sounds more experienced, higher energy and more reliable (hearing that from multiple people btw).
  • Both Christian and Melissa will be at SAFE Conference – in case you’re going and have questions – talk to them!  And if you're not going, they are both open to calls. Christian was quite gracious - took time to answer all my questions, and was direct about saying, "I don't know" to the very few he couldn't answer (which I appreciate, I prefer to not get bamboozled). He sounded like a "straight-shooter" - pardon the pun!
  • Apparently, NJ politicians are notoriously “slow” to return their NRA questionnaires – those are used by the NRA to provide scores, assess investment strategy, launch support, etc. That has been a frustration to the team at NRA HQ. However, to be clear: the NRA is well aware of “sensitivities” in states like NJ where demographics lean left and politicians are hesitant about where they align themselves.
  • That said, the NRA WILL be doing advertising for Kim Guadagno regardless – it’s obvious to all that she’s the best choice from a 2A perspective.  So, the myth that the NRA won’t work on her behalf unless she gives full-throated support for the 2A is apparently just that – a myth!
  • As far as the relative “radio silence” of the Guadagno campaign – I’m not going to lie...it is apparently a shared concern! And the absence of support from the Republican Gov’s Association is an even bigger concern. However, the NRA is in constant contact with her team and will be pushing forward regardless.
  • At NRA HQ, they have already identified which pols are in districts with narrow margins where grassroots efforts could be critical... and that’s where they’ll focus volunteer efforts. Christian’s point: “We’re not going to waste our volunteers’ time – we’re going to use them in races that can be won.” Makes sense to me!
  • They’re well aware of timing – and things will be happening soon... targeted emails to NJ NRA members, etc. (...the kinds of communications I’ve personally been waiting to see...)
  • Keep in mind (and this was a good reminder for me as well), voters have VERY short memories! Hence, you generally don’t see significant election activity until the immediate run up to Election Day – but once it starts, it’s at a frenetic pace.  They will need “all hands on deck” for phone banks and door-to-door canvassing. So, yes, the timing is tight... but they’re well aware of the timelines and confident they will pull off a strong effort – but only WITH OUR HELP!
  • He made a pleasant (and quite fair, I thought) reminder that the NRA is not a Fortune 100 corporation... it’s a grassroots organization. That said, if you haven’t passed your contact info to them yet, please do so... and when the email comes asking for your help, DO try to drop everything and help out!
  • I was told if you passed your info to Riccardo already, it’s in their database.
  • On a final note, Christian was very complimentary of ANJRPC and CNJFO – said they’re working very cooperatively together... so perhaps that also shatters some of the “all these 2A groups do is fight each other”-myths as well.

I’m not a naïve person by any means... but I felt pretty good about the discussion. Yes, they have limited staffing... but they’re approaching it very strategically, and they’re in it for the long haul... now we need to step up! If you have further questions, I suggest you talk to them directly. I'm merely sharing a synopsis of my conversation - I would encourage you to have your own conversation with them if you want more info.

 

Muscle Peel! Jus Muscle!

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20 hours ago, Mrs. Peel said:

I had a nice talk yesterday with Christian Ragosta, the NRA employee overseeing political action in NY, NJ, CT & PA. He’s been in that role for 3 years. Here’s the gist of our discussion:

  • FYI, state reps (like Melissa, who was over S. Jersey only previously but now covers the whole state since Riccardo left) are contractors. Melissa has performed this role for the NRA under prior years’ contracts in other states with great success. Her job is to harness volunteerism up to the election with the goal of pushing critical support to pro-2A candidates to help them win. Obviously, that also builds a larger volunteer pool for subsequent post-election activities.
  • I’m personally not concerned Riccardo is no longer representing N. Jersey – Melissa sounds more experienced, higher energy and more reliable (hearing that from multiple people btw).
  • Both Christian and Melissa will be at SAFE Conference – in case you’re going and have questions – talk to them!  And if you're not going, they are both open to calls. Christian was quite gracious - took time to answer all my questions, and was direct about saying, "I don't know" to the very few he couldn't answer (which I appreciate, I prefer to not get bamboozled). He sounded like a "straight-shooter" - pardon the pun!
  • Apparently, NJ politicians are notoriously “slow” to return their NRA questionnaires – those are used by the NRA to provide scores, assess investment strategy, launch support, etc. That has been a frustration to the team at NRA HQ. However, to be clear: the NRA is well aware of “sensitivities” in states like NJ where demographics lean left and politicians are hesitant about where they align themselves.
  • That said, the NRA WILL be doing advertising for Kim Guadagno regardless – it’s obvious to all that she’s the best choice from a 2A perspective.  So, the myth that the NRA won’t work on her behalf unless she gives full-throated support for the 2A is apparently just that – a myth!
  • As far as the relative “radio silence” of the Guadagno campaign – I’m not going to lie...it is apparently a shared concern! And the absence of support from the Republican Gov’s Association is an even bigger concern. However, the NRA is in constant contact with her team and will be pushing forward regardless.
  • At NRA HQ, they have already identified which pols are in districts with narrow margins where grassroots efforts could be critical... and that’s where they’ll focus volunteer efforts. Christian’s point: “We’re not going to waste our volunteers’ time – we’re going to use them in races that can be won.” Makes sense to me!
  • They’re well aware of timing – and things will be happening soon... targeted emails to NJ NRA members, etc. (...the kinds of communications I’ve personally been waiting to see...)
  • Keep in mind (and this was a good reminder for me as well), voters have VERY short memories! Hence, you generally don’t see significant election activity until the immediate run up to Election Day – but once it starts, it’s at a frenetic pace.  They will need “all hands on deck” for phone banks and door-to-door canvassing. So, yes, the timing is tight... but they’re well aware of the timelines and confident they will pull off a strong effort – but only WITH OUR HELP!
  • He made a pleasant (and quite fair, I thought) reminder that the NRA is not a Fortune 100 corporation... it’s a grassroots organization. That said, if you haven’t passed your contact info to them yet, please do so... and when the email comes asking for your help, DO try to drop everything and help out!
  • I was told if you passed your info to Riccardo already, it’s in their database.
  • On a final note, Christian was very complimentary of ANJRPC and CNJFO – said they’re working very cooperatively together... so perhaps that also shatters some of the “all these 2A groups do is fight each other”-myths as well.

I’m not a naïve person by any means... but I felt pretty good about the discussion. Yes, they have limited staffing... but they’re approaching it very strategically, and they’re in it for the long haul... now we need to step up! If you have further questions, I suggest you talk to them directly. I'm merely sharing a synopsis of my conversation - I would encourage you to have your own conversation with them if you want more info.

 

Peel, a big THANK YOU for doing this excellent write-up!  It means more coming from YOU than it would coming from me.  I knew Christian would impress you too.  The Coalition has been working with him proudly since we first met well over a year ago at Tony Simon's "The 2nd is for Everyone:  Diversity Shoot" held at Gun For Hire in Woodland Park, NJ.  Tony's next Diversity Shoot is Thursday October 5th.  Meeting is FREE & so is the pizza.  If you wish to shoot, it's just a $10 fee (and that includes FREE RENTALS from GFH's collection---just pay to "feed" the rentals by buying ammo at GFH).  Walk-ins welcome :) 

Melissa was at Howell Gun Works on Rt. 9 in Howell all afternoon yesterday & she'll be there until 5pm today as well hosting a "NRA Day".  She also attended a Gun Club meeting last night.  I helped her a little yesterday afternoon from 12:30-4pm by working the table with her.  Howell Gun Works is VERY "anti-Murphy", so they let her set-up right in the middle of the store!

"The NRA" is ALL OF US!  That's what "Grass Roots" means.  If the NJ gun owners stop shooting themselves in the feet & drag themselves & their like-minded friends & relatives to the polls, WE GOT THIS ELECTION!  Only difference between Hillary and Murphy is Murphy won't bother writing a book blaming EVERYBODY ELSE for his loss.......

FIGHT.  THEN FIGHT.  THEN FIGHT SOME MORE!   

Thanks again for writing & see you in a week at NJSAFE Convention!

For all of us at the Coalition,

Dave "Rosey" Rosenthal, VP

Coalition of New Jersey Firearm Owners (CNJFO)

http://www.cnjfo.com 

 

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