NH gun group to members: 'Don't be fooled' by Chris Christie

Christie Takes Aim at Rubio in Battleground State Iowa

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has been riding a wave of momentum in New Hampshire, picking up coveted endorsements and rising in the polls. But Christie's upswing has hit a snag. An influential gun group has put out a scathing notice about Christie to its politically engaged membership.

The New Hampshire Firearms Coalition, one of two major pro-gun groups in the state, emailed its members Wednesday, telling them "don't be fooled!" by the Republican presidential candidate's tough talk about the Second Amendment.

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"The truth is Chris Christie has been an anti gun activist for his entire political career," the group's vice president, Scott Krauss, wrote in the email.

The Second Amendment is an important issue to New Hampshire Republicans and the politically active membership could hinder Christie's efforts in the state.

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NH gun group to members: 'Don't be fooled' by Chris Christie
Republican Presidential hopeful Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey speaks during the 2016 Republican Jewish Coalition Presidential Candidates Forum in Washington, DC, December 3, 2015. (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
Republican presidential candidate New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie speaks during the Republican Presidential Debate, hosted by CNN, at The Venetian Las Vegas on December 15, 2015 in Las Vegas, Nevada. AFP PHOTO/ ROBYN BECK / AFP / ROBYN BECK (Photo credit should read ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images)
THIS WEEK - 10/4/15 - Presidential candidate and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie appears on THIS WEEK WITH GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS, airing on the ABC Television Network. (Photo by Ida Mae Astute/ABC via Getty Images)
Chris Christie, governor of New Jersey, waves while waiting for Pope Francis, not pictured, to arrive for a joint meeting of Congress in the House Chamber at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Thursday, Sept. 24, 2015. Pope Francis, the first pontiff to address U.S. Congress, is preaching to a less-than-harmonious congregation as he faces a Congress riven by disputes over issues closest to his heart: income inequality, immigration and climate change. Photographer: Pete Marovich/Bloomberg via Getty Images
MEET THE PRESS -- Pictured: (l-r) New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie appears on 'Meet the Press' in Washington, D.C., Sunday, Sept. 13, 2015. (Photo by: William B. Plowman/NBC/NBC NewsWire via Getty Images)
THE TONIGHT SHOW STARRING JIMMY FALLON -- Episode 0319 -- Pictured: (l-r) Governor Chris Christie during an interview with host Jimmy Fallon on August 31, 2015 -- (Photo by: Douglas Gorenstein/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
SQUAWK BOX -- Pictured: Governor Chris Christie in an interview on August 27, 2015 -- (Photo by: David Orrell/CNBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - AUGUST 25: New Jersey Governor and Republican presidential hopeful Chris Christie speaks at Chabad House at Rutgers University to express his opposition to President Obama's Iran deal on August 25, 2015 in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Christie also encouraged U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) to oppose the deal. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)
DES MOINES, IA - AUGUST 22: Republican presidential candidate New Jersey Governor Chris Christie tosses a pork burger on the grill at the Iowa Pork Producers Tent at the Iowa State Fair on August 22, 2015 in Des Moines, Iowa. Presidential candidates have a long tradition of making campaign stops at the fair. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Christie has been on the uptick in the Granite State with his polling numbers on the rise, including the latest CNN/WMUR poll showing him in third place with nine percent support. He's also picked up series of endorsements from political leaders there, including one from the state's conservative newspaper the Union-Leader.

The New Hampshire Firearms Coalition, which calls itself the state's "only no-compromise" gun group, which has been skeptical of Christie's commitment to the Second Amendment, agreed to a meeting with Christie after repeated requests from the governor's staff.

State Representative JR Hoell, who is a member, said it has been three weeks since they have heard anything from Christie's staff. He said that shows that Christie is not serious about explaining - or rectifying - his position on guns.

They point to Christie's refusal to pardon several out-of-state visitors arrested under New Jersey's "draconian" gun violations. They say that he could, as governor, enact a concealed carry law with reciprocity and that he appointed "anti-gun" county prosecutors.

Christie once supported the assault weapons ban, saying in 1993 that "no one needs a semiautomatic assault weapon." More recently, in 2009, when he was running for governor, Christie also opposed an effort in Congress to pass the "right-to-carry reciprocity" bill that would allow valid gun owners to carry their guns into other states.

Related: Chris Christie's Record on Guns Could Be Problematic in New Hampshire

Hoell said that they sent the email to its members now because "with everybody endorsing Christie right now we thought it was the right time."

Scott L. Bach, a Christie supporter from New Jersey who is also the executive director of the Association of New Jersey Rifle & Pistol Clubs, commended Christie's work on guns in the state.

"Garden State gun owners owe Governor Christie a huge debt of gratitude - his historic vetoes, pardons, and executive actions have disrupted the gun ban agenda in New Jersey," Bach said in a statement provided by the Christie campaign.

In the same email, the New Hampshire gun group also said Ohio Governor John Kasich is weak on gun rights.

"Bottom line: Governors Kasich and Christie have demonstrated by their actions that they are probably hostile to your Second Amendment rights," Krauss wrote in the email.

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