ATLANTA (AP) — The National Rifle Association has announced that retired Marine Lt. Col. Oliver North is poised to become the gun lobbying group’s next president.

North is a popular speaker before the group and brings star power at a time when gun-control advocates seek to seize on momentum against the gun lobby in the wake of the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history and one of the deadliest school shootings.

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North is already drawing comparisons to former NRA president Charlton Heston, who famously uttered that his firearms could only be taken “from my cold, dead hands.”

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North will be replacing Pete Brownell, who decided not to seek a second term.

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