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Former Congresswoman Gabby Giffords's gun-safety organization launched a two-week ad campaign Wednesday against Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and Republican Sen. Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire, taking them to task for their stance against background checks and other gun legislation. Although Ayotte isn't up for reelection next year, McConnell is.

A Public Policy Poll shows:

Ayotte now has a negative approval rating with 44% of voters giving her good marks and 46% disapproving. That's down a net 15 points from the last time we polled on her, in October, when she had a 48% approval with 35% disapproving. 75% of New Hampshire voters- including 95% of Democrats, 74% of independents, and 56% of Republicans- say they support background checks. And 50% of voters in the state say Ayotte's 'no' vote will make them less likely to support her in a future election, compared to just 23% who consider it to be a positive.
Meanwhile, Mayor Against Illegal Guns, the group funded by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, is pondering whether to undertake a months-long television, radio and direct-mail campaign against Sen. Mark Pryor of Arkansas, one of the four Democrats who voted against expanding background checks to gun shows and internet sales of firearms:
The risk to Democrats is that Bloomberg’s money could weaken Pryor for the general election, tipping the race to the GOP. On the general notion of sending Pryor a message, liberal columnist Max Brantley of the Arkansas Times recently wrote, “It will mean electing someone who is even worse on guns and just about everything else, most likely the Club for Growth's emissary to Arkansas, Tom Cotton."
Fox News is touting its new poll showing that if there were a manhunt like that for the Boston bombers in their city, 69 percent of Americans would want to have a gun in the house.

But the poll also found that 82 percent of voters, including 77 percent in gun-owning households, still favor expanding background checks to private sales. And, more to point, 61 percent say they would be less likely to support a candidate who voted against expanding background checks versus the 23 percent who are more likely to support such a candidate. Sixty-eight percent say they are more likely to support a candidate who voted in favor of expanding background checks.

Depending on how that breaks down at the state level, it's obvious the campaigns of Giffords's group and MAIG could have an impact at the ballot box. But, as Greg Sargent points out:

[T]hese findings don’t go to the intensity question, i.e., how likely it is that this issue will be prioritized over others or whether a candidate’s position on it will ultimately motivate people to organize, lobby or donate money to Senators. But they suggest, again, that expanding background checks remains very popular and that a lawmaker’s vote on it could matter, at least to some degree.
Gun dealers via the National Rifle Association and their Republican marionettes in the Senate defeated the latest efforts to impose reasonable new gun regulations. But these two polls show once again just how far outside the mainstream view on guns the Republican Party is. Transforming the wide gap between how voters view the matter and how policy gets aligned with that view depends not only on making a few senators feel the heat but also on dumping the Senate's super-majority threshold for getting gun legislation passed. Without filibuster reform, firearms reform is a no-go.

Originally posted to Meteor Blades on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 09:21 AM PDT.

Also republished by Shut Down the NRA, Repeal or Amend the Second Amendment (RASA), and Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Of course, it is critical that gun control (9+ / 0-)

    legislation sails on the wind of popular support. Until we get the stunning amount of special interest cash out of our legislature, we the people have that snowball's chance in hell situation to contend with. The NRA and the gun lobby pack quite a punch with Citizens United help.

    •  The GOP's position is indefensible (6+ / 0-)

      on background checks, and they know it. So I agree that firing up popular opinion in favor of background---which is already there, but hasn't coalesced yet---is the best route forward.

      In addition, every background check opponent should be asked again and again, in every forum, why they oppose such a non-controversial measure. Put them on the defensive, make them explain, and their opposition will collapse like a house of cards.

      •  They will all "explain" their vote (3+ / 0-)

        the same way - that universal background checks will lead to a federal gun registry which will allow the feds to know where all the guns are so they can be confiscated.

        No, it makes no sense and has no basis in reality, but that is and will continue to be their argument.

        "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

        by SueDe on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 10:27:12 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yes! Just the way that cars are confiscated (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          714day, Beastly Fool

          I agree it makes no sense.  The fifth amendment protects property of all kinds, including legally-obtained (and responsibly registered) firearms from seizure.

          •  The drug war has successfully subsumed (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Beastly Fool

            many of the protections of property rights enumerated or even implied in the constitution.  Asset forfeiture is now the law of the land, and legally registered firearms wouldn't be protected from seizure any more than your legally registered car or your legally registered boat or your legally deeded house.

            "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

            by SueDe on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 12:36:08 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  The Northeast seems like the wrong part of the... (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      HappyinNM, 714day, dewtx, Beastly Fool

      country for the NRA to make a stand, especially defending a one-term senator without a whole lotta influence in a presidential election year.

      In a region where they're pitted against both the Newtown parents group and Bloomberg's money... the NRA will lose.

      I think Ayotte just made a grave political miscalculation.

      "Capitalism is the astounding belief that the most wickedest of men will do the most wickedest of things for the greatest good of everyone" - John Maynard Keynes

      by markthshark on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 10:06:59 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Also, how do you explain this? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      noway2, FrankRose

      So Much For The 90 Percent: Poll Shows Gun Control Legislation’s Failure Greeted With Relief By Many

      If legislation sails on the wind of popular support, it might be important to have an accurate handle on how much public support there is, and so far, I think one side of this debate has been sailing on badly skewed polls. Which precisely explains what happened in the Senate.

  •  The question is: would the (5+ / 0-)

    Senator's (or Representative's) vote on this be, in some way, determinative for the voter.  That is hard to measure in polling, although not impossible.  

  •  Could we get some of these numbers broken down (4+ / 0-)

    by states as well? I've just had a posting battle with some 2nd Amendment fan about this very issue. They maintain that we're wrong about this analysis because in red states the issues won't swing votes to the Democrats. Maybe they're right about a place like Wyoming but is that true for all of the 46 Republican Senators? And, more importantly, for the ones that are up for re-election in 2014?

    Sorry conservatives, but Occam's Razor isn't a beard trimmer for jihadists. What it means is I don't have to accept your crazy-assed theories as an alternative to reality.

    by ontheleftcoast on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 09:45:05 AM PDT

    •  Mayors Against Illegal Guns... (5+ / 0-)

      ...has done a fair amount of state polling. That would be a place to start. For Fox's and PPP's nationwide poll, I don't think there is enough of a sample size to break it down state by state, especially states with small populations where the polls may have only included a dozen or so participants.

      Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

      by Meteor Blades on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 10:10:15 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I was kind of hinting it would be interesting (3+ / 0-)

        if Markos (or maybe the DCCC, DSC, etc.) paid for some polling in states with 2014 Senate races. Maybe we really have an issue that will drive voters to the Democrats in 2014. Or we could be barking up the wrong tree on this. The problem with national polls is we don't have national popular votes on anything. It's state by state, district by district that matters.

        Sorry conservatives, but Occam's Razor isn't a beard trimmer for jihadists. What it means is I don't have to accept your crazy-assed theories as an alternative to reality.

        by ontheleftcoast on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 10:15:45 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Fivethirtyeight (4+ / 0-)

          had some analysis along these lines:

          though no actual polls trying to measure the impact of the vote on re-electability.

          •  Great link and wonderful analysis of the data (5+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            scott5js, Ozy, Meteor Blades, 714day, KenBee

            at hand. Damn, it looks like we really are guessing if this issue is going to be important in 2014. The final sentence from 538 says a lot though.

            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.

            I made a similar claim in one of Kos' diary about the gun debate. I think we're putting too much hope on it as a winning ticket. I think it can help steer us towards a win, but it won't be enough by itself. Jobs will beat guns.

            Sorry conservatives, but Occam's Razor isn't a beard trimmer for jihadists. What it means is I don't have to accept your crazy-assed theories as an alternative to reality.

            by ontheleftcoast on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 10:36:00 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  But it may be enough to draw people to the polls. (0+ / 0-)

              I think Gabby Giffords op-ed really got to some people.

              •  Yes, but by itself I don't think it will be enough (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                HappyinNM, KenBee

                to win big. And we need a big win in 2014. Let's put it another way, do we think that driving people to the polls will matter if they don't feel the need to vote for Democrats? We could end up driving more Republicans to vote than Democrats unless we also get issues like jobs (and stop talking about effing austerity) in the minds of the voters.

                Sorry conservatives, but Occam's Razor isn't a beard trimmer for jihadists. What it means is I don't have to accept your crazy-assed theories as an alternative to reality.

                by ontheleftcoast on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 10:54:47 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

            •  The issue isn't JUST gun control, it's also (0+ / 0-)

              how we're being REPRESENTED, or NOT represented, as the case may be.

              On almost every issue, we can paint those who are in effect REPRESENTING the corporations, at the expense of the voters and citizens - and THIS IS THE LARGER ISSUE.

              Senators were not elected to represent corporations or lobbyists, and this should be pointed out at every turn, whether on gun control, or pharmaceuticals, or oil subsidies, or tax fairness, you name it...

              "Gun violence places a tremendous burden on America's health care system. Direct medical costs for gunshot wounds total more than six million dollars a day." - The Violence Policy Center

              by Beastly Fool on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 09:06:15 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  Not trying to get banned, but how can this be (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        noway2, FrankRose

        explained and reconciled with that 90% poll?

        From the MEDIAite analysis:

        "Prior to the Senate’s vote, a number of surveys – including a recent Washington Post/ABC News poll – showed that 90+ percent of adults supported expanded background checks. Subsequent polls have also shown, however, that voters do not view gun control legislation as a priority for Congress. While voters support expanded background checks, they did not see passing new laws as an effective use of lawmakers’ time.

        This does not bode well for groups like New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s Mayors Against Illegal Guns who have pledged to spend a significant amount of money galvanizing Democratic primary voters to oppose incumbent legislators who opposed the new gun control bill. Surveys show that Democratic primary voters may be predisposed to punish Democratic officeholders who did not support new gun laws. The general electorate, however, is far less amenable to support politicians who champion stricter gun control measures."

        •  Why would you be banned? Different polls... (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          714day, noway2, Glen The Plumber, KenBee

          ...have shown different things since December. But one thing they always show is an 80% to 90%+ support for background checks. The PPP and Fox Polls indicate that failure to support background checks COULD make an incumbent vulnerable in 2014. But there are obviously going to be other issues on voters' minds as well. And as Sargeant says, the poll does not indicate "intensity" of the feeling of voters who say they would be less likely to back a candidate who opposed background checks.

          Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

          by Meteor Blades on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 12:06:04 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I am just worried that we are going (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            KenBee, FrankRose

            to sail that 90% number right off a cliff. I think it's dangerous to punish moderate/conservative Democrats who are listening to what they are hearing from home, and I gotta tell you, that 90% poll number was laughable in rural America. If you punish moderate Democrats in rural America for their votes you will get Republicans in their place.

            •  Manchin (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Very Long Range, KenBee, FrankRose

              They are already running commercials against him here in WV over the gun issue.

              Many of my low information voter neighbors now say because Manchin is for gun control that no democrats should be trusted no matter what they say.

              I'll be interested to see what the effect of all the gun control is when Manchin comes back up for re election. Maybe the issue will be in the back of their minds by then.

              However I pretty much think the whole push by our party for gun regulation pretty much guarantees Rockefellers senate seat goes to a republican.

    •  The polling numbers will change over time (0+ / 0-)

      as more people understand they have been betrayed by their Senators and Representatives.

      The issues must be kept lively before them as to how so many politicians don't care about voters beyond how they might manipulate their vote, that they have their eye on the corporate donors above and beyond the interests of the citizens.

      Education is always key...

      "Gun violence places a tremendous burden on America's health care system. Direct medical costs for gunshot wounds total more than six million dollars a day." - The Violence Policy Center

      by Beastly Fool on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 09:00:48 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I hope they have shot themselves in the foot (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    shoeless, scott5js

    by voting against gun control improvements .

    Drop the name-calling MB 2/4/11 + Please try to use ratings properly! Kos 9/9/11

    by indycam on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 09:52:35 AM PDT

  •  A simple question (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    shoeless, jck

    Here's something I wonder about in relation to background checks. Congress, which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the NRA, nixed background checks for gun buyers. Bad idea, but utterly predictable. The question is, do states that have concealed carry permits do background checks on those to whom the give those permits, or is it simply a matter of passing an approved gun safety course? They've decided not to care who buys a gun. Do they care who gets a permit, or would that also violate some hopelessly miscontrued version of the Second Amendment?

    The Bush Family: 0 for 4 in Wisconsin

    by Korkenzieher on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 09:54:35 AM PDT

    •  What is the last thing this government actually di (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      accumbens, jds1978, KenBee

      right and what was the cost to get it?

      I am thinking DADT, which we got in exchange for weaking social security.

      This government is about preventing anything correct from being implemented.

      Some may have some impassioned speeches about this or that but they are outnumbered and no matter what we try to get cross to the leaders, they have their own agenda and we are just interrupting.

      They only talk nice to you because they want donations and volunteers when it is time to renew their subscription to the gravy train.

    •  Most states do require background checks... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tytalus, HappyinNM, KenBee

      ...for a concealed-carry permits, but not all. And not all require gun-safety courses either. Up until a law that just passed a month ago, Coloradans who wanted a permit could get on with a background check and as little as a one-hour gun-safety class on the internet without ever firing a gun.

      Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

      by Meteor Blades on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 10:12:36 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Generaly, yes (0+ / 0-)

      AFAK, all states that issue CCL permits require background checks to get one.  

      Your claim about background checks on purchases is false though.  All transfers from Type 1 and Type 7 FFLs to non licence holders must be background checked.  Transfers between non-FFL holders instate are regulated by state law.  Transfers across state lines by non-ffl holders are illegal.  

      If you have a Type 3, there are different rules (I don't have time go go into them here).  

      I want all transfers to be background checked.  I did not like the legislation that the senate considered because it made major portions of the FOPA86 non-operative (travel across state lines with firearms).  

      I hope congress tries again and gets it right.  The big problem with background checks is that they will not catch the most dangerous people who are mentally ill and have had no contact with the mental health system.  

  •  And this is why the GOP is SO INVESTED in (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skod, shoeless, jck, DRo, ontheleftcoast

    election cheating.

    They don't give a rat-fuck about public sentiment or opinion or whether people REALLY get their "message".

    They are ALL ABOUT cheating during elections so that they are NOT impacted by any consequences of their decisions.

    Like spoiled teenagers they want what they want, when they want it, they don't want to be told "no" and they do not want to be penalized or punished for it.

    So I don't think "public sentiment' means shit to them.

    •  On the gun issue, they don't care because for (0+ / 0-)

      so many years the NRA has pulled all the strings. Now, with serious money on the other side, this could turn around. And I hope a bunch of them get caught up in the change.

  •  You can want a gun (10+ / 0-)

    AND want everybody else to go through the same background check you go through. I want other drivers on the road to be licensed and insured, but that doesn't mean I'm anti-driving.

  •  I think it is important that Senators that SUPPORT (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jck, Faito, DRo, a2nite, HappyinNM

    background checks hear that you will not support Senators that oppose background checks.   Who better than to give a jibe to their colleagues while peeing in the Senate bathrooms.

    We need to make the threat real and tangible.  NRA does not deal with hypotheticals.  They just show the candidate what they will get for every vote.

    We need to do the same thing.

    We will never be free from fear as long as we fear the NRA.

    by captainlaser on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 10:05:16 AM PDT

  •  Isn't it time for the Dems to start talking about (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jck, Faito, HappyinNM

    the "radical" and "extremist" views on gun safety?

    The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt. Bertrand Russell

    by accumbens on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 10:05:30 AM PDT

    •  Yes, perhaps call an AR-15 or AK-47 a (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Faito, a2nite, diomedes77

      Weapon of Mass Destruction and you might get somewhere.

      In the meantime, your Dems have to tell Heitkamp, Warner, Baucus and Pryor that they are going to be primaried.   And since Baucus has fled the field to K Street, we need to let Brian Schweitzer know that we have his back if he will come out in favor of gun control.

      We will never be free from fear as long as we fear the NRA.

      by captainlaser on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 10:09:05 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'd rather use my energy forcing Repukes out. (0+ / 0-)
      •  Schweitzer (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        We could have his back all he wants but if he comes out in favor of gun control he will never win.

        In fact  the lack of the dems pushing gun control paved the way for a lot of the dems in rural areas to win.

        I can pretty much guarantee the effort to pass gun control by dems has ruined their chances in rural areas. Word is now no dems are to be trusted since rural voters gave them a chance and instead of keeping their jobs from going overseas, or raising their wages, they chose gun control.

        Huge blunder as far as keeping the majority. I'm not saying background checks are a bad idea. I'm for them. Just not a good idea to keep dem majority.

  •  So far Bloomberg has focused on attacking (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Faito, ontheleftcoast, KenBee

    pro-NRA Dems.

    Not that there's any love lost for Pryor, as far as I'm concerned.

    I will wait and see whether he ever goes after pro NRA gop-ers.

    You can't make this stuff up.

    by David54 on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 10:16:31 AM PDT

  •  Who cares (0+ / 0-)

    if Pryor gets ousted and replaced with a Republican?  He's essentially a Republican anyway.  And frankly who cares if Gabi Giffords' approval ratings are dropping because she is daring to speak out against spineless politicians who are more concerned about the NRA than they are about kindergarteners rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.  Sometimes a meaningful fight is worth low approval ratings.  Bloomberg gets that.  He says if he leaves office with sky high approval ratings, he will have wasted his time in office.  I admire that.

    •  Who cares? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      HappyinNM, KenBee

      I do, a little bit... Defeating Pryor brings Mitch McConnell one step closer to being majority leader.

      I have to admit, Harry Reid's failure to act on even modest filibuster reform undermines my argument, because in some important ways, McConnell is the majority leader.  

      But it is important that Democrats head the Senate committees, and it is important that the GOP not control both houses of Congress. Right now, with redistricting in 2010, we are stuck with a GOP majority in the House.  We can't have them controlling the Senate as well.  

      McConnell as Majority Leader means that we will not be able to get any federal court judges, let alone Supreme Court judges, approved.  It will allow the GOP to get a lock on the federal courts for years to come.  

      For this reason, and this reason alone, I'd prefer not to see money spent against Pryor.  He will probably lose anyway, but we'll need to fight for every seat we can get in 2014.

      “If the misery of the poor be caused not by the laws of nature, but by our institutions, great is our sin.” Charles Darwin

      by ivorybill on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 10:41:14 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Right (0+ / 0-)

      Better to be right on guns and lose the majority than to pander to gun owners. I mean the GOP and Democrats are the same on most other issues right??

  •  Brantley is using a tired argument to prevent (0+ / 0-)

    change. "Don't primary him! We'll end up with worse!"

    How does he expect us to hold our representatives responsible for their votes?

    The Republicans don't have that problem.

  •  Pretty amazing that in even red districts (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    voters somewhat disapprove of a member of Congress who voted against background checks. It looks like this issue has some political currency and staying power.

    Alternative rock with something to say:

    by khyber900 on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 10:21:54 AM PDT

  •  I would love to know (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    how Kelly Ayotte made her decision to hitch her political wagon to Sen.'s  McCain and Graham's stars.  What metrics could she possibly have used in coming to the conclusion that those two would represent policies most suited to enhancing her political ambitions?

    "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

    by SueDe on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 10:23:44 AM PDT

  •  According (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    HappyinNM, KenBee

    to my analysis, if you add up the Electoral Votes of states in which both senators voted for the Manchin-Toomey amendment, you get 261 votes.  That doesn't include DC because they didn't have a vote, let alone two.  Include their 3 Electoral Votes, and you have 264.  

    That shows you how screwed Republicans are on the national level.  

    Add up the Electoral Votes of states where at least one senator supported the amendment and compare it to the states where at least one senator opposed it, and you get a 395-278 tally. The 395 number is just slightly higher than 59% of the total Electoral Votes represented in this sample.

    Still short of that magical 60 needed to do anything in the Senate.

  •  I'm skeptical generally (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    about the ability for this issue to influence many senate elections.

    That said, I think it's noteworth that PPP polled Ayotte in NH.  I've thought for some time that she's the most vulnerable Republican on this issue even if she's not up for reelection until 2016. Susan Collins saw which way the wind is blowing and voted for background checks, even if Ayotte did not. NH is not Montana or Arkansas. Ayotte may be the first GOP senator to face a real and sustained backlash for selling out to the NRA and the gun industry.  

    “If the misery of the poor be caused not by the laws of nature, but by our institutions, great is our sin.” Charles Darwin

    by ivorybill on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 10:48:28 AM PDT

    •  If you add the congressional districts in those (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      states where dems have a chance at the Senate, and supercharge the House races on top of the Senate run, you can create a kind of multiplier effect.

      Just who does the GOP represent - on gun control? on taxes? on climate change? on pharmaceutical prices? on saving Medicare? Medicaid? Social Security? on regulating banks? on protecting women's health? the list goes on...

      EVERY Senate race ought to be considered winnable - except the super red. Even Texas is one day expected to go red. So we need to maintain our best optimism.

      The GOP's propensity to shoot themselves in the foot has become signature to their reputation.

      Senator Ayotte is only proving herself true to form. The more sick and tired the public becomes of McCain and Graham, so will follow Ayotte's fortunes. That's what comes of velcroing oneself to blind opportunists.

      "Gun violence places a tremendous burden on America's health care system. Direct medical costs for gunshot wounds total more than six million dollars a day." - The Violence Policy Center

      by Beastly Fool on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 09:38:21 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Bloomberg also gives money to GOP (0+ / 0-)


  •  Has anyone in congress ever been voted out... (0+ / 0-)

    because of a gun issue vote?

    Just wondering.

    •  Maybe not yet, but (0+ / 0-)

      they have been voted out because they failed to represent their constituents, a somewhat different issue.

      And that's the larger issue, election-wise. That's where they can be beaten. On issue after issue, the GOP has chosen the corporations and their lobbyists over the priorities of their states and districts - they have sold their floor votes for campaign contributions or other favors rather than listening to the interests of their citizens.

      THIS is where they are vulnerable. THIS is where they can be voted out.

      It's happened MANY times...

      "Gun violence places a tremendous burden on America's health care system. Direct medical costs for gunshot wounds total more than six million dollars a day." - The Violence Policy Center

      by Beastly Fool on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 09:45:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Meteor Blades: You seem conflicted on the issue. (0+ / 0-)

    From the above, it looks like you're for public safety legislation.

    But your recent comments on my suggestions sounded more like a gun "rights" advocate.

    I'm confused.

    My suggestions again:

    Limit legal guns to those that require hand-loading, one bullet at a time. No detachable magazines (or ammo containers of any name).

    License and register gun owners and gun purchases. All of them. No exceptions.

    Treat them like cars, etc.

    National buyback of all newly illegal guns and ammo.

    Seriously reducing the lethality of weapons is the most important of all public safety measures (concerning guns) and it's the one no one is proposing. Feinstein's bill doesn't go far enough. Limiting magazine size to 10 rounds isn't good enough. It still provides the commando fantasy for the would-be mass killer, and it provides far too much firepower for "ordinary" criminals as well.

    Ratchet it all down to hand-loaded guns, and we radically reduce the carnage in America and remove a big part of the commando fantasy.

    Not sure why you have a problem with that.

    •  Because the one bullet at a time thing... (4+ / 0-)

      ...will mean confiscation of tens of millions of guns, including the majority of modern handguns, which are semi-automatic with detachable magazines.

      No votes exist for such a confiscation, and not just in the hamstrung Senate. In fact, I'd be willing to be bet that the percentages of people opposed to this part of your proposal are about equal to those who support background checks for all: 80%-90% of Americans.

      As a gun-owner, I have no problem with licensing and registration. But that makes me one of what I suspect is a small percentage of gun-owners.

      Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

      by Meteor Blades on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 02:09:47 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I have had a bad feeling about this whole thing (0+ / 0-)

        politically from the beginnings of this gun 'discussion'...thankfully discussion not manifested before the election!...and that Bloomberg is attacking a dem first, and there are people here who seem to be supporting misgivings seem to be being realized even now, so far from the 2014 elections.
        Now we have to overcome Bloomberg's money and hyperbole in addition to the NRA's?

        great...just great.

        This machine kills Fascists.

        by KenBee on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 02:22:49 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Good for you on registration and licensing. (0+ / 0-)

        To me, it's just common sense.

        I still don't think we need confiscation if we have a voluntary buyback program.

        And, as mentioned, I'd be against actually removing guns from households after the buyback period ends.

        One or two years.

        We could just let gun owners know that if they don't sell their weapons back, they would no longer be able to call themselves "law abiding citizens." And that seems important to gun owners.

        It would be like driving on expired tags, etc. No one comes searching at your home for those, but if you're stopped for other reasons, you get a ticket.

        We could do the same for guns. Perhaps a warning first, then a ticket, then a bigger ticket. Confiscation would be down the road.

        Anyway, I do understand the issue with the numbers. Tens of millions. It's absurd that we ever let it get to this point. We should have limited the firepower from the getgo.

        Guns should be for self-defense, hunting and target practice. There was never a need for commando firepower.

  •  Is this the poll that shows that 22% (0+ / 0-)

    of registered Democrats are pleased that SB 649 failed?

  •  Ayotte...what to do? (0+ / 0-)

    It's not really that surprising that Senator Ayotte would cast her vote against more gun regulation, is it?  She is a darling of the conservative base in New Hampshire - a state that loves its guns.  Why would she risk antagonizing them?

    While its true that many independents and even some Republicans may favor expanded background checks, it's unlikely they would necessarily abandon support for Ayotte based on a single issue in an election still three and a-half years away.  Especially since she uses a somewhat valid argument that current gun laws are erratically enforced - a position that resonates well in libertarian NH.

    More likely, much of Ayotte's slide is linked to her palling around with senators McCain & Graham, and her participation in the Ambassador Rice debacle - not one of her best strategic career moves.

    Ayotte still has three years of breathing room before a potential match-up with NH's new Democratic governor who still must face reelection to another two-year term in 2014.

    "The highest patriotism is not blind acceptance of official policy, but a love of one's country deep enough to call her to a higher plain." --George McGovern

    by Progressive Pride on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 02:44:10 PM PDT

  •  I've said it elsewhere - beyond background checks (0+ / 0-)

    the primary issue is who these Senators REPRESENT. Do they represent the voters and citizens of their states and the states' districts, or do they represent the corporations.

    The gun lobby is blinding in their false righteousness and bullying in their message that gun control is about taking guns away from people - but other corporate interests have blinded representatives from the public's trust and interest - Big Pharma, Big Oil, Big Banks, etc.

    It's time for a come to Jesus movement about just who politicians REPRESENT. And the democrats can win on this if they get ahead of the curve and get focused.

    Russ Feingold, Elizabeth Warren, Sherrod Brown - some senators and hoped for future candidates have a strong sense of this, but the message can be clarified and sharpened further.

    The House and Senate can both become places of greater public integrity, if our elections just get focused on such things...

    "Gun violence places a tremendous burden on America's health care system. Direct medical costs for gunshot wounds total more than six million dollars a day." - The Violence Policy Center

    by Beastly Fool on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 08:54:23 AM PDT

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