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.

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.”

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

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