June 2003

Downrange: 06/03

HESTON STEPS DOWN. At the NRA’s annual convention in Orlando April 26-27, Charlton Heston stepped down as the group’s president. Unquestionably, Heston’s celebrity helped amplify the NRA’s gun-rights message and put supporters in Congress and the White House.

As the NRA’s public face for five years, he successfully steered the organization through several public-relations disasters involving shootings, and he won wide favor with fellow celebrities and politicians. For example, as part of his going-away event, country music singer Toby Keith performed in Orlando, and Florida Gov. Jeb Bush gave the convention’s keynote speech.

“It helped the NRA immeasurably to have Charlton He...

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