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NRA chief in Minn. to campaign for Cravaack

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Rep. Chip Cravaack, David Keene
Rep. Chip Cravaack, center, and National Rifle Association President David A. Keene talk to store worker Steve Jenson on Saturday, Nov. 3, 2012, at Fisherman's Corner in Duluth, Minn.
Derek Montgomery for MPR

The head of the National Rifle Association was in Duluth on Saturday afternoon to help Republican Rep. Chip Cravaack with his re-election campaign. 

NRA President David Keene has been traveling the nation since late September promoting NRA-endorsed candidates like Cravaack. Cravaack maintains that his DFL challenger, former Rep. Rick Nolan, supports of gun control measures.

At a bait and hunting store just outside Duluth, Keene told a couple of dozen Cravaack supporters to do whatever they could to help re-elect the first-term congressman. He also said that if President Barack Obama is re-elected, gun rights could be up for grabs unless Congress supports them.

"The insurance that we all have and the day-to-day protection of the Second Amendment and our rights and the values we share takes place in the Senate and the House," Keene said, "and without people like Chip there, we're all in trouble."

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Keene explaned why he choose to visit Minnesota this close to Election Day: 

"This part of Minnesota is a great Second Amendment area. These are people that hunt. They value the values that we value, but it's also got a lot Democrats and a lot of liberals in it. So this is a place where, not only do we hope we can make a difference, but where the incumbent congressman has earned the 'A' we've given him, and that's why I decided to come up here."

Nolan's campaign issued statement calling Nolan a "strong and trusted supporter of Second Amendment rights."

Both Cravaack and Nolan said they went deer hunting during Saturday's opener.