Cabela's Affiliate Program Member

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

McAulliffe Moves To Finalize Regs on Carrying in State Buildings

The Washington Post reports that Governor Terry McAuliffe has issued the final regulation for public comment that would further restrict legal carrying of firearms in state buildings:
The release of the policies last week triggered a lengthy review process that could include several rounds of public comment, but the McAuliffe administration will make the final call, leaving little doubt the rules could become permanent.
Gun owners are encouraged to click here and sign up for an email that will allow you to comment as soon as the proposed regulations are printed in the Virginia Register of Regulations.

The Terrorist Watch List - The Gun Ban Lobby's Latest Attack on Freedom

Last week's eBullet included an article by National Review's Charles C.W. Cooke that detailed why gun owners and the NRA are right to oppose taking away civil rights of those on the so-called Terrorist Watch List.  Cooke noted that it is not just the NRA that is concerned about this ever growing list compiled in secret by the U.S. Government, the American Civil Liberties Union has expressed concern as well.
Courtesy of
NRA Commentator Colion Noir adds another voice to those who believe Americans should not lose their rights simply because their names may be similar to a possible terrorist.  The late U. S. Senator Ted Kennedy and Congressman John Lewis, ended up being stopped at airports because their names were similar to people who were actually being watched by the government.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Why The True Rate of Gun Ownership Doesn't Show Up in Polls

Firearm sales are likely to set a record in 2015.  The gun ban lobby would have us believe that a smaller percentage of Americans are responsible for this sales increase, basically adding to their arsenals rather than a growing number of Americans becoming gun owners.  They cite various polls to back up this assertion, including the General Social Survey (GSS) which is conducted annually by the University of Chicago.  The GSS claims that gun ownership is declining and pins the percentage of Americans who say they own at least one gun is about 32%.  Other polls put the number upwards of around 40-45%.

Polling on the question of whether someone owns a gun is rather tricky however as Dean Weingarten wrote recently on which was later picked up by Weingarten uses a Zogby Analytic poll from February of this year to show that a large percentage of the public believes it is not the business of pollsters whether or not a gun is in the home:
QUESTION: “If a national pollster asked you if you owned a firearm, would you determine to tell him or her the truth or would you feel it was none of their business?”Gallup recently released a poll showing that gun ownership had declined from polls they had taken in an earlier time period. That number is inconsistent with the number of firearms that have been sold since President Obama took residency, but the difference can be answered by the Zogby Analytic question above. The poll indicates maintaining anonymity is a contributing factor
  • 36% of Americans feel it is none of the pollster’s business and that includes 35% of current gun owners 47% of Republicans and 42% of Independents  
Weingarten writes that the number of privately owned guns in the country has more than tripled since 1970 and is on pace to quadruple by the end of 2016.  So, is this large number of guns in the hands of an ever shrinking number of Americans?  Weingarten thinks not based on the Zogby poll data and also using data from two states that require every gun owner to obtain a permit to own a gun:
In those states that track the number of legal gun owners, the number of gun owners have increased dramatically in the last five years.  In Massachusetts, the number of gun owners has increased 66% in the last five years;  In Illinois, the number has increased about 75%, from a little over 1 million in 2010, to 1.8 million in 2015.
Weingarten concludes while the actual number will likely remain unknown, it is between one third and one half of the population.  With that in mind, it's up to us to make sure that those gun owners understand how important it is to understand the politics of the issue and to understand just what the term "commonsense gun safety" really means to their ability to continue to own and use firearms.

Monday, November 16, 2015

University of Baltimore Professor Suggests Gun Manufacturers Pay for Security Measures at Public Buildings

The Hill has this op/ed from Jeffrey Ian Ross, a professor in the School of Criminal Justice at the University of Baltimore, that suggests improved access control to public places is the best short term solution to violence committed with firearms:
Pro-gun advocates seem to support better mental health screening and therapy, enhanced training in the use of firearms, and better and safer methods of storing weapons. These suggestions are directed toward the saner and law-abiding people of our society. But the anti-gun-control advocates have no solution to the gunman, either motivated by malice or suffering from a major mental illness, who walks into a crowded movie theater and opens fire on the crowd.

Then there are those who dislike the suggestion of installing access controls (the range of security measures used to monitor and prevent unwarranted entry into a room, floor, building, etc.) at vulnerable locations, like our college and university campuses, improving the methods and technology to detect and deter individuals who may open fire on the defenseless public.
Ross then runs through a litany of reasons why people oppose such increased controlled access.  The bottom line is, he thinks that gun manufacturers should have to pay the cost of installing these measures, and having to do so would induce them to finally agree to the various gun control proposals that have floated around for years:
In the end, once the gun manufacturers — wholesalers and retailers — and the pro-gun lobby realize how much money they are spending on access control, perhaps they will take the wider issue of gun control more seriously and consider the ways that the American public gets access to guns, how many they can own and how to better monitor their use.
I keep thinking about how Virginia's crime rate is at it lowest level in decades, at the same time gun sales have increased over 100% since 2006, and wonder why these people can't see that maybe instead of infringing on our rights, they actually get serious about targeting criminals.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Dave Kopel: Everytown's "Expanded" Background Checks a Bait and Switch

Last week, Dave Kopel wrote two columns on the Washington Post's Volokh Conspiracy that lays bare the real intentions behind the call for "expanded" or "universal" background checks that Michael Bloomberg's Everytown for Gun Safety pushes. wrote about the first piece that discussed the impact the proposal has on firearm safety training, something you would think Everytown would support.  The second piece dealt with how "universal" background checks is a de facto handgun ban for people under the age of 21.  Federal law prohibits those people from purchasing a handgun from a dealer.  But those individuals are not banned from possessing a handgun under federal law.  They can use a family's gun at the range or receive them as a gift from a family member.  But under so-called universal background checks, they would not be able to even do that as those checks have to go through a dealer and dealers cannot transfer a handgun to someone under the age of 21.  Kopel calls "universal background checks as proposed by Everytown (and implemented in Washington State) a classic bait-and-switch, presenting one thing, but doing another.  He appeared on NRANews' Cam and Company to discuss both articles.

Friday, November 6, 2015

Erroneous Link in Today's eBullet

Special Notice!!!
In the November 6 eBullet, there was an error in one of the article links that took the reader to a different web site than the one where the article was located.  It was fixed immediately after the error was noted.  We apologize to anyone who opened the link before it was fixed.

The Trace, Others, Spin Narrative of Role Guns Played in 10th District Loss

Bloomberg's anti-gun mouthpiece The Trace, has picked up the narrative first offered in the Washington Post yesterday by Delegate Scott Sorovell, claiming that talk of gun control did not drive turn out up in Powhatan, costing Dan Gecker the race.  Both pieces look at how retiring State Senator John Watkins performed in his last election (2011), and then note that Sturtevant underperformed Watkins by 4% in Powhatan and underperformed Watkins in Chesterfield as well. From The Trace:

  • In a four-way race, Gecker lost with 47 percent to Glen Sturtevant’s 49.7 percent. In 2011, the Democratic Candidate, David Bernard, lost to then-incumbent GOP Sen. John Watkins by 13 points. (The 2011 election provides the best comparison, because there was also no governor’s race then to naturally increase turnout.)
  • Gecker’s share of the Powhatan vote was 22.1 percent — virtually the same as the 22.3 percent Bernard received in 2011. What’s more, despite its increased turnout, Powhatan delivered a smaller slice of the district’s overall votes than it did four years ago. In 2011, the county accounted for 22 percent of the ballots cast in the district. In 2015, that fell to 18 percent.
  • In the city of Richmond, turnout rose significantly from 2011 levels — but Gecker’s 67.5 percent of the vote was again virtually the same as the 67.1 notched by the Democratic candidate four years ago.
  • Gecker did much better in the third geographic portion of the district, suburban Chesterfield County. There he took 41.7 percent of the vote, compared to the 30 percent recorded by Bernard in 2011.
  • Sorovell pretty much said the same in yesterday's Post Op/Ed.  What neither The Trace or Sorovell mention is Watkins was a 26 year incumbent in 2011 running against a relatively unknown candidate.  Watkins has deep ties in the area thanks to his family's Watkins Nurseries business.  Also not mentioned is the fact that Gecker lost his home precinct as well as his Board of Supervisors District part of the 10th.  Gecker has represented the predominately Republican district as a Democrat on the board for eight years, which likely accounts for the difference in Democrat votes cast in the Chesterifeld part of the district in 2015 vs. 2011. 

    Sorovell stuck closer to the gun ban lobby's talking points in concluding his article than did The Trace.  Sorovell said Northern Virginia no longer agrees with the NRA's position and the rest of the state is not far behind.  At least The Trace admitted the focus on gun control did not appear to increase Democrat turn out in the City of Richmond, which is what has the gun ban lobby scratching its head.  The only thing the gun ban lobby has to hang its hat is they spent $1.5 million to hold a district that gave Barack Obama 62% of the vote in 2012 and was already occupied by an NRA-PVF  "D" rated Democrat.

    Thursday, November 5, 2015

    McAuliffe: Senate Election Wasn't Going to Make a Difference

    In his first public event since getting his butt handed to him by voters Tuesday, Governor Terry McAuliffe told reporters that even if he had won control of the state senate nothing really would have changed legislatively. Really?  You spent millions from your PAC and talked Bloomberg into spending over $2 million on something that wasn't going to matter?  Yeah, we believe that like we believe it had nothing to do with presidential politics. Oh wait, he said that too.

    Wednesday, November 4, 2015

    Gun Sales Set Another Record in October

    As reported this morning in the Washington Free Beacon:
    The FBI’s National Instant Background Check System processed 1,976,759 firearms related checks in October. That is a 373,290 increase in checks over last year and a new record for the month. It also makes October the sixth consecutive month to see a record number of checks.

    Since every purchase of a new gun in the United States requires a background check the metric is considered a reliable proxy for how many overall gun sales there have been, even though the number does not represent a one to one calculation for gun sales. The federal government and most states do not require background checks on gun sales made between private parties. Additionally, some states request FBI background checks on their citizens who apply for gun carry permits.

    So far in 2015 the FBI has performed 17,584,346 firearms related checks. Currently, 2015 is on pace to beat 2013’s record 21,09,273 checks.

    Campaign 2015 Post Mortem

    After spending $43 million, including over $2 million dumped in by Michael Bloomberg's Everytown for Gun Safety, we wake up to the status quo - a state senate with 21 Republicans and 19 Democrats.  The biggest win of the night goes to 10th Senate District GOP Candidate Glen Sturtevant, who overcame a $700,000 negative attack funded by Everytown and a 3500 vote deficit after 24 precincts in Chesterfield and 30 precincts in Richmond had been counted.  It wasn't until the Powhatan registrar confirmed to a local television news reporter at approximately 9:00 PM that Sturtevant overwhelmingly beat Gecker in the county that the AP and other outlets started calling the race for the GOP candidate.
    Because of the large number of votes cast in Powhatan, and the amount of time it took to report the totals, Senate Minority Leader Dick Saslaw told the Washington Post that Democrats had hopes that outcome would be reversed due to "irregularities."  Gecker has yet to concede the race and sent staff to Powhatan to examine the returns.  Sturtevant ended up with 73.8 percent of the vote in Powhatan where turnout was boosted by tightly contested local races.

    In the other race that Bloomberg invested heavily, his chosen candidate won.  Everytown immediately went to Twitter to claim victory, but was quickly reminded that spending over $2 million to hold a seat already held by an anti-gun Senator, while losing the bigger battle of flipping control of the state senate, was not a victory.

    So, who is the real winner in last night's election?  In the short term, the GOP, and gun owners, because Governor Terry McAuliffe got nothing for all of the money he spent from his PAC and that he convinced Bloomberg to spend to help him flip the Senate.  We can thank the gun owners in Powhatan County for that. 
    “Amazing Powhatan turnout. Definitely Bloomberg backlash,” longtime Democratic political operative Paul Goldman said in a text message.
    And as the Richmond Times Dispatch editorialized about Powhatan gun owners part in the Gecker loss:
    The Democrat made a massive mistake when he accepted campaign swag from an interest group affiliated with former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who seeks tougher gun control laws. Gecker might have lost anyway, but the Bloomberg intervention gave Powhatan voters a reason to rise up in indignation. Sturtevant also received funds from outsider sources but the Bloomberg connection vividly cast Gecker on the wrong side of an issue of vital concern to Powhatan’s citizenry. A campaign focused on guns redounded to Gecker’s despair. This is not a surprise.
    From a gun owner perspective, we still can't override a McAuliffe veto of good 2nd Amendment related bills.  And, as Brian Schoeneman wrote in his election post mortem on Bearing Drift, regarding the GOP, maintaining the staus quo is not really something to be popping the corks over. 
    We maintained the status quo.  That’s it.  In every seat that was held by the GOP, we won.  In every seat held by the Democrats, we lost.  A few of those State Senate seats were open seat races (whether through retirement or the primarying of an incumbent Republican), but they were also in heavily partisan areas, where the non-incumbent party had only a slight chance to pull off an upset (for example, the 8th, 11th, 12th, 29th, and 36th).

    The two most competitive challenger races – at least by media standards – were the Nancy Dye/John Edwards battle in the 21st District, and the Frank Wagner/Gary McCollum battle in the 7th District.  Neither of the challengers came close to unseating the incumbent, with both Edwards and Wagner winning by approximately 8 points.

    Maintaining the status quo in the Senate was a must win, and we won it.  But we gained no ground, and the millions poured into the Commonwealth by outside groups didn’t have an overall impact on the final outcome.  In the two races they targeted, they went 1-1.  The only people really pleased with that outcome should be the TV stations in Richmond and Northern Virginia.
    Gun owners were challenged this election and with the exception of one race (remember the gun ban lobby originally targeted four seats) we won.  Everytown and the national gun ban politicians are already trying to spin that one race as a major victory, which was expected.  This election was a wake-up call to gun owners.  Hopefully we heeded it and are prepared for war in 2016. That campaign starts today.

    I had the opportunity to speak with NRANews Cam and Company host Cam Edwards about Tuesday's results: