Todd Rathner

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

Todd Rathner - NRA Board Member
Owner of the T. Jeffrey Safari Company LLC, Lobbyist for Rathner and Associates, former lobbyist for the National Rifle Association, lobbyist for Knife Rights Inc.

Todd J. Rathner is a gun rights lobbyist in the Arizona state legislature and the owner of an African safari hunting company. Packages offered by the T. Jeffrey Safari Company allow hunters to kill lions, baboons, zebras, and monkeys. In addition to being a gun rights lobbyist, Rathner also lobbies on knife rights. On his Twitter page, Rather describes himself as follows: "Jewish Redneck, Love guns, hunting and hunting for guns. Uber Conservative." On his Facebook page, he brags that he is “Making the world safe for guns and knives, one law at a time.” Rathner's lobbying activity has focused primarily on expanding the ability of individuals to carry guns in public. “Any law that allows law-abiding citizens to carry a firearm in more places makes the community safer,” he says. Rathner has helped push for laws in Arizona that allow residents to: a) Carry loaded handguns in public (openly or concealed) without a permit or screening of any kind; b) Bring guns to work and keep them in their vehicles in company parking lots, and c) Enter establishments that serve alcohol with loaded firearms (permit holders only).

Controversial Actions and Statements

Controversial Actions and Statements:

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Todd Rathner (Board Member)

On February 1, 2013, Rathner tweeted, “The Million ‪#Muslim March???? This is what this country has become. ‪#Muslims marching on Washington on 9/11/2013 SICK!” Rathner was referring to the American Muslim Political Action Committee’s (AMPAC) planned “Million Muslim March” on September 11, 2013, the 12th anniversary of the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon. AMPAC’s website stated that the march was planned to “demand that our civil rights be protected by our government.” In the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Muslims experienced discrimination, harassment and violence in the United States.

2013/02/01

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

On October 8, 2012, Rathner tweeted, “#RomneyCampaignin3Words Gonna Whip Obama #ObamaCampaignin3Words Ouch My Ass‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬!” Rathner was referring to Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama.

Republican Party (GOP) |
2012/10/08

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

On August 27, 2012, Rathner tweeted, “Calling illegal aliens 'undocumented' is like calling rape 'legitimate'#illegalaliens, #immigration, #gop2012, #dnc2012.” Rathner was referring to controversial remarks made by U.S. Representative Todd Adkin (R-MO). On August 19, 2012, Akin commented on the issue of pregnancy induced by rape, stating, “It seems to be, first of all, from what I understand from doctors, it’s really rare. If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut the whole thing down.”

Immigration | Women’s Rights
2012/08/27

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

Religion
2012/08/26

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

On August 22, 2012, Rathner tweeted at the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence (CSGV), “Islam wants us all dead.”

Religion
2012/08/22

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

On August 3, 2012, Rathner tweeted, “@davidaxelrod When are you gonna tell your crook of a boss to release his college transcripts, fast and furious documents, & his birth cert?” David Axelrod is the senior strategist for President Barack Obama’s reelection campaign. A report released by the Department of Justice’s Inspector General on September 19, 2012 found that there is no evidence that Attorney General Eric Holder was aware of the tactics used in “Fast and Furious” until after it was concluded in 2011.

Republican Party (GOP) |
2012/08/03

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

On July 22, 2012, Rathner tweeted, “A society in which life has been so cheapened a sicko can shoot up a movie theatre & the President keeps on fundraising #LiberalsBuiltThat.” Rathner was referring to a mass shooting that had occurred in Aurora, Colorado two days earlier. In that shooting, severely mentally ill gunman James Holmes killed 12 people and wounded 58 others. Holmes wore full body armor during the attack and was armed with two handguns, a shotgun, and an AR-15 assault rifle with a 100-round drum magazine. All of this equipment was legally purchased.

Republican Party (GOP) |
2012/07/22

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

On July 8, 2012, Rathner tweeted, “So do all these dead ‪Jihadis‬ have to share ‪72 virgins‬, or do they each get a fresh set of 72? I am so confused...” and linked to a video entitled “Hellfire missile sends a Taliban fighter to his 72 virgins.” Rathner was referring to a passage of the Qur’an which states that the prophet Muhammad said, “The smallest reward for the people of Heaven is an abode where there are eighty thousand servants and seventy-two [virgins].”

Religion
2012/07/08

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

On July 2, 2012, Rathner tweeted, “My fellow ‪Jews‬ better wake up soon, the self hating ‪[U.S. Representative and Democratic National Committee Chair] Debbie Wasserman Schultz has allied herself with today's ‪Nazi‬’s.” Debbie Wasserman Schultz is Jewish. One of the “allies” Rathner was referring to was Evelyn Garcia, a critic of U.S. military support for Israel and a Palm Beach County representative to the Democratic National Committee.

Conspiracy Theory | Religion | Women’s Rights
2012/07/02

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

On May 25, 2012, Rathner tweeted, “If SECupp was my sister Larry Flynt would be lying in the street bleeding out.” Sarah Elizabeth Cupp (S.E. Cupp) is a conservative political commentator and writer. Rathner was referring to a faked explicit photo of S.E. Cupp which appeared in Hustler Magazine, which is owned by Larry Flynt. Flynt released a statement about the photo, saying, “That’s satire. I’m able to publish this because of the Supreme Court case I won in 1984, Flynt v. Falwell.” Hustler Magazine v. Falwell was a 1988 U.S. Supreme Court decision that held that the First Amendment protects parodies of public figures as long as they could not be reasonably taken as true.

Freedom of Speech | Vigilantism
2012/05/25

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

On August 8, 2011, Rathner tweeted, “Recovering and catching up after ALEC in Nawlins. It was fun to see all my fellow lobbyists and legislator friends.” The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) was founded by conservative stalwart Paul Weyrich in 1973 and provides model legislation to politicians. While ostensibly a nonpartisan organization, the model legislation offered by ALEC promotes only a conservative agenda. According to The Nation, “ALEC’s priorities for the 2011 session included bills to privatize education, break unions, deregulate major industries, [and] pass voter ID laws.”

Lobbying Activity | Education | Labor | Race
2011-08-08

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

On June 16, 2011, Rathner tweeted, “TUSD [Tucson Unified School District] smacked down over La Raza program. When will we get America back in our schools?” Rathner was referring to an optional course in Mexican-American Studies offered by the Tucson Unified School District, which is 60% Latino. The course—which is open to students of any ethnicity—may be discontinued under a 2011 Arizona state law, HB 2281, that bans classes designed for students of a particular ethnic group. Defenders of the course—which has been tied to higher academic achievement—have filed a lawsuit alleging that HB 2281 violates the free speech and due process protections of the U.S. Constitution.

Education | Freedom of Speech | Immigration | Race
2011-06-16

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

Just weeks after the January 8, 2011 shooting rampage in Tuscon that left six dead and 13 wounded, Rathner lobbied aggressively in the Arizona legislature to have the Colt single action Army revolver declared the state’s official firearm. The legislation was widely criticized, including by lawmakers (Republican state Senator Adam Driggs called the legislation an “advertisement for Colt”) and Native Americans with the Navajo Nation, who said the Colt was a tool used by white settlers to push them off their ancestral lands. "If you want to symbolize something and shove that something...in their faces, this is what it is," said Albert Hale, an ex-Navajo president. "The gun symbolized the extinction of those Indians who were here." The bill was signed into law by Arizona Governor Jan Brewer in April 2011.
Gun Industry | Lobbying Activity | Race
2011-04-28

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

On December 3, 2010, Rathner tweeted, “Looks like Campus Carry will be a big issue in AZ this year. Maybe people in these defenseless vicitms [sic] zones will now have some protection.” He was referring to SB 1467, a bill that sought to force the states’ public colleges and universities to allow students and faculty to carry guns on their campuses. After being amended substantially, the bill was passed by the Arizona state legislature and sent to Republican Governor Jan Brewer. She vetoed the legislation on April 18, 2011, however, calling the bill “poorly written.” Among those who opposed SB 1467 were the following: the Arizona Board of Regents; the presidents and chiefs of police of the University of Arizona, Arizona State University, and Northern Arizona University, and; the Joint Council of Presidents of Arizona’s public community colleges and universities. "Guns have no place in schools," said Arizona State University President Michael Crow.

Lobbying Activity | Education
2011-04-18

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

On February 22, 2011, Rather posted a photo on Facebook of a sign that prohibited eating, drinking, and smoking in a hearing room, and then complained that Spanish-speakers were not abiding by the sign. He also indicated that he doesn’t consider what Spanish-speakers eat to be real food.

Immigration | Race
2011-02-22

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

On December 3, 2010, Rathner tweeted, “Looks like Campus Carry will be a big issue in AZ this year. Maybe people in these defenseless vicitms [sic] zones will now have some protection.” He was referring to SB 1467, a bill that sought to force the states’ public colleges and universities to allow students and faculty to carry guns on their campuses. After being amended substantially, the bill was passed by the Arizona state legislature and sent to Republican Governor Jan Brewer. She vetoed the legislation, however, who calling it “poorly written.” Among those who opposed SB 1467 were the following: the Arizona Board of Regents; the presidents and chiefs of police of the University of Arizona, Arizona State University, and Northern Arizona University, and; the Joint Council of Presidents of Arizona’s public community colleges and universities. "Guns have no place in schools," said Arizona State University President Michael Crow.

Education
2010-12-03

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

Rathner called then-MSNBC host Keith Olbermannn a “dirty Nazi” via Twitter on November 5, 1010.

2010-11-5

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

On Election Day 2010, Rathner tweeted, “For some reason there were no Black Panthers at my polling place this morning. I don't think they'd do well intimidating anyone in AZ!” Rathner was referring to two members of the New Black Panther Party who were accused by conservative media outlets of intimidating voters outside a polling station in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on Election Day in 2008. No complaints of voter intimidation were ever received from individuals at that polling station, however, and a criminal investigation of the matter by the Department of Justice was dropped during the George W. Bush administration.

Political Violence | Race
2010-11-2

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

On the eve of the November 2, 2010 congressional elections, Rathner tweeted, “Just hours till our "Hopey, Changey" experiement [sic] with socialism is over, I can almost hear the Constitution sighing with relief,” and, “I wonder how the ‘Astro Turf’ is gonna feel when [then-House Speaker] Nancy [Pelosi], [Senate Majority Leader] Harry [Reid], and BHO [President Barack Hussein Obama] land smack in the middle of it tomorrow.” Rathner was defending Tea Party organizations that had been accused of being “astroturf” (i.e., corporate-backed interests) rather than true grassroots groups. Hope and change were two persistent themes of Obama's 2008 presidential campaign.

Republican Party (GOP) |
2010-11-01

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

As a result of Rathner’s efforts on behalf of the knife lobby, there are now no restrictions on the carrying of knives in Arizona and local municipalities are prohibited from enacting their own knife regulations. Even openly carrying a samurai sword in public is now legal in Arizona.

Lobbying Activity |
2010-07-01

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

On March 25, 2010, Rathner posted a photo of then-First Secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba Fidel Castro on his Facebook Wall with the caption “Well somebody's happy about Obamacare!” He was referring to the "Patient Affordability and Protection Act," which had been signed into law by President Barack Obama two days earlier.

Health Care
2010-03-25

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

On March 24, 2010, Rather posted an image on his Facebook Wall of a board game called “Obamopoly” (a parody of the popular game Monopoly). The game board suggests that the President can use a “Race Card” to “Get Off Scot-Free.” Other board squares rail against "Cap and Trade" legislation and "Socialized Medicine," and mock Americans who collect welfare.

The Environment | Health Care | Poverty | Race
2010-03-24

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

Rathner lobbied for a 2005 bill that sought to allow concealed handgun permit holders in Arizona to carry loaded, concealed handguns into establishments that serve alcohol. The guns in bars bill was opposed by all major law enforcement organizations and a large segment of the tourism industry, including the Arizona Restaurant Association. The legislation was passed by the Arizona legislature, but subsequently vetoed by then-Governor Janet Napolitano, a Democrat. Rathner vowed that the legislation would come up again, and suggested that the Second Amendment rights of Arizona residents were being infringed upon if they could not carry guns into bars (in reality, laws prohibiting such behavior date back to Arizona’s Frontier Era. The bill did come up again, and was eventually signed into law in 2009 by Arizona’s Republican Governor, Jan Brewer. It took effect on September 30, 2009.

2009-09-30

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

Rathner posted a photo of President Barack Obama made to look like the Batman villain The Joker on his Facebook Wall on August 4, 2009. At the bottom of the image is the word “SOCIALISM.” The image has been denounced as racist for showing an African American in “whiteface” in a reversal of traditional minstrel roles. A writer for LA Weekly commented, “The only thing missing is a noose.”

Race
2009-08-04

Todd Rathner (Board Member)

The T. Jeffrey Safari Company is a participant in the NRA’s “round-up” program, which allows customers to round up their safari trip purchases to the next round dollar increment, with the excess funds going directly to the NRA.

Gun Industry |
2005-1-1
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