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Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Christian Science Monitor: Democrats Fired Up to See if Gun Control Can Be Winning Election Issue

The Christian Science Monitor had this article yesterday on how the Democrats itching to see if gun control can be a winning election issue:
But will gun safety actually motivate voters? Will it cause them to punish opponents of “common sense” regulation and reward supporters?

That’s the key question, because America has seen versions of this story before – mass shootings, a presidential candidate for more gun regulation (Barack Obama), and favorable public opinion. And yet it is the gun-rights lobby, spearheaded by the National Rifle Association (NRA), which has had the upper hand in legislation at the state level and in Congress.

Still, advocates of gun-safety regulation feel encouraged, with many saying the country is reaching a tipping point. They describe a slow boil of anger and fear about gun deaths – now combined with terrorism. They cite a frustrating disconnect between public opinion and a nonresponsive Congress.

“There comes a time when you have to say something, we have to make a little noise, when you have to move your feet. This is the time,” said Rep. John Lewis (D) of Georgia, the veteran civil rights leader, during the House sit-in last month.
The article points to the 2015 Virginia State Senate election and the victory of Jeremy McPike, which Bloomberg's Everytown spent heavily as one reason gun control is no longer a "third rail" issue.  What the Monitor reporter did not say is a)it was a Democrat open seat, and a district that went for Barack Obama in both 2008 and 2012 and b)the other race in which Bloomberg spent heavily was won by the NRA endorsed candidate Glen Sturtevant.  It is likely that McPike would have won without Bloomberg's money and Sturtevant won in spite of Bloomberg outspending the NRA almost 10-1.  Which leads me to this part of the Monitor article:
What will make a difference this year is organization and momentum, says Ms. Milikowsky. Everytown can’t match the NRA in dollars, she says, but it has people power: mayors, moms, survivors, and other supportive Americans, a total of 50,000 volunteers who will be focusing on key state races, as well as advocating for Clinton.
Really?  Everytown can't match NRA in dollars?  Bloomberg has much deeper pockets than the NRA and he spends heavily propping up the organization.  Plus, NRA's real power is not money, it is the dedicated group of members who get involved in campaigns and go the polls.  It will take a big effort on the part of gun owners this year, an effort not really seen since the 2000 election, to make sure Hillary Clinton is not elected president.  You can sign up to volunteer by going to http://www.nrailafrontlines.com/volunteer and find volunteer opportunities in your area at http://www.nrailafrontlines.com/calender.

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