But don't worry. Some pundit who thinks it's still 1990 will explain to you like you're five years old that it's all about intensity. No. it's not. It's about rural states having less population but more votes than urban states.
Check out this powerful graphic (just click and keep scrolling down).
Everything that's wrong with American politics coverage in one convenient sentence:Jonathan Bernstein:Even House Republicans who had no intention of voting for the gun bill marveled privately that the president could not muster 60 votes in a Senate that his party controls.Point one: Yeah, isn't it weird how the Democrats control 55 seats but couldn't get 60 votes on a controversial measure?
Point two: You know what word is strangely missing from this column? "Filibuster."
While I’ve been saying that the GOP is broken and hopelessly dysfunctional, Rachel Maddow has come up with a new name for part of that dysfunction: Republicans are “post-policy.” To some extent, that’s because they’ll simply oppose whatever Barack Obama proposes, but there’s also an even more interesting aspect of it that they simply have given up on and lost the capacity for developing policy ideas.This is right. And it's something I've noted since 2010: Republicans love power but hate governance. It's what makes them so difficult to deal with.
And, no, it’s not just because they are conservatives and conservatives are inherently less likely to have policy ideas. A look at the evidence will demonstrate this.
More politics and policy below the fold.
The Gun Vote and 2014: Will There Be an Electoral Price?But all that is a far cry from "Democrats will be punished at the ballot box for bring up a gun vote. No, they won't. In some areas it will help them, but in few will it hurt.
Thus, Democrats are not in much of a position to capitalize on the vote from the standpoint of individual seats in Congress in 2014. To the extent that the issue plays favorably for Democrats in 2014, it is likely to be for symbolic reasons — because they are able to persuade voters that it reflects a Republican Party that is outside the mainstream.
This is not necessarily a hopeless strategy — particularly if Democrats can weave the background-check vote into a broader narrative about the Republican Party having become too conservative. But it does mean that, from an electoral standpoint, the symbolic implications of the vote outweigh the substantive ones. For Democrats to have much of a chance to win back the House — bucking the historical trend of the president’s party faring poorly in midterm years — the Republican Party will first and foremost have to be perceived as out-of-touch on the economy.
Michael Tomasky explains why:
My takeaway from [Sen. Joe] Manchin’s talk was this. First, the voters need to trust you in general terms. He’s been around a long time—governor, now senator. People know him. Most do know that he’s not secretly bent on taking away anyone’s right. So that comes first. But then you have to be willing to use that trust to do something a little bit risky with it. Manchin was willing to do that. For all but the 5 percent of the 40 percent, that makes him a leader. And there’s no reason other red-state Democrats shouldn’t be able to follow his example.Politico:
The group launched by Gabrielle Giffords will start airing gut-punch radio ads against Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and New Hampshire Sen. Kelly Ayotte, highlighting the Republicans' votes against the Democrats’ failed gun control legislation, POLITICO has learned.Huffington Post:
[Retiring Sen. Max]Baucus, who serves as the Senate Finance Committee chairman, has distinguished himself from fellow Democrats by aligning time and again with the conservative positions of the GOP. Most recently, he was one of only four Democrats to oppose gun background check legislation on the Senate floor.