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If you think the contentious battle over gun policy in the Colorado state legislature last year is going to doom a political party's chances at the polls this November, you very well could be right. If you think the party that will suffer at the polls would be the Democrats, you very well could be wrong.

The party that is suffering right now due to the issue of guns is not the Dems - they were united last month against GOP efforts to roll back the gun reform passed last year.

Within the GOP, however, signs of what may be a growing wedge between the party's more moderate members and its far right wing are popping up.

Over at the Facebook page of the state gun lobby (Rocky Mountain Gun Owners), there have been two posts in the past 24 hours that should raise some eyebrows:

According to the RMGO post, they are hearing from members that the Jefferson County Republican Party (where a Dem was forced to resign and appoint a replacement due to a gun lobby fueled recall threat last year) is telling volunteers who support RMGO-endorsed candidates, "Thanks, but no thanks" and is barring them from GOP offices.

This is, of course, also a convenient reason to send out a message to supporters to donate and volunteer to those campaigns as well as RMGO.

None-the-less, this is what is being posted. And, this report jibes with some other news from this week that shows pro-gun candidates in state GOP straw polls have performed quite poorly. More background on that, here:

And in another example of strife within the GOP over the gun issue, there is the city of Castle Rock, Colorado (which went for Romney by 60%) where a citizens group has launched a referendum to halt the repeal of an open carry ban that was rammed through the city council thanks to the support of RMGO. More on that here:

But back to the issue at hand — according to the RMGO Facebook page, at the door of GOP party offices, volunteers are said to have been asked who they are supporting in State Senate primaries, and if they support any of the RMGO-endorsed candidates, the volunteers are asked to leave.

At the same time, the state GOP is inviting in campaign supporters for other State Senate candidates who are not pro-gun, at least to RMGO's standards (which bills itself as tougher than the NRA).

According to the RMGO post, the supporters of the more moderate GOPers are not only invited to work in the party office, but they have:

exclusive access to key data that could help give them an unfair advantage in the upcoming primary election.

It’s obvious that the party is turning its back on pro-gun candidates, and that’s why it’s vital that you do everything you can to support RMGO-PAC endorsed candidates.

More below

So here's an anecdote (that's similar to two other examples) that shows the pulse of the Colorado state GOP from the ground in the Colorado state Senate races, including the district where Democratic Senator Evie Hudak resigned in order to avoid a recall campaign due to her support of gun reform - a district the state the GOP does not seem to want to lose again because of trigger happy pro gun supporters shooting their mouths off.

This particular seat, in fact, has a history of just that happening — Hudak originally won her seat thanks to a three way race with two GOPers, a moderate and a pro-gun zealot that peeled away enough support to help Hudak win.

Meanwhile, in the campaign for governor, it is a similar story - candidates with mushy gun records are in pole position.

A letter from the head of RMGO posted at their Facebook site, points out that former GOP congressmen Tom Tancredo and Bob Beauprez are both the most visible and widely known of the GOP field, but they also are squishes on guns — Tancredo having voted for gun reform after the Columbine tragedy, and Beauprez publicly supporting an amendment that curtailed gun rights:

Ritter and Beauprez had both endorsed Amendment 22, which requires an instant check for certain sales that take place at a gun show, even if there would be no check required for the same sale between the same buyer and seller if the sale took place at any other location.

Thus, while Beauprez and Ritter differ on many gun issues, they both supported the referendum, which passed with 70 percent of the vote.

These are only anecdotes, but they sure seem to be piling up in a hill evidence that shows the gun issue in Colorado is no longer the slam dunk it once was for GOP candidates - the electorate has been trending more liberal over the past 10 years or so, and with it, more moderate GOPers have taken a position not unlike that of a deer stuck in the headlights of an oncoming car - a car driven by the far right wing of the party.

Sun Mar 09, 2014 at 9:02 AM PT: From the comments:

"The off year remains the biggest challenge. How (2+ / 0-)

guns play into this is tricky, because guns would seem to amplify the predicted GOP turnout advantage in the off year.  Effective GOTV is still most important, & I'm not convinced that Dems will turn out to say no to pro-gun candidates.  

But this is still welcome news, especially for the race that's my top priority: Senate District 19, where the gun lobby had pursued a recall against Evie Hudak, who resigned to allow Jefferson County Dems to name a replacement.  They named a great person: my friend Rachel Zenzinger, & she will need our help to hold this very purple seat.  Please give what you can:

Originally posted to We Shall Overcome on Sat Mar 08, 2014 at 07:29 PM PST.

Also republished by Shut Down the NRA, Repeal or Amend the Second Amendment (RASA), Colorado COmmunity, and Firearms Law and Policy.


Will the gun issue hurt one of the political parties in Colorado this November?

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Comment Preferences

  •  As history is being written ... (10+ / 0-)

    ... and straight from their own pens.

    Great current history! Well done.

    2014 is HERE. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

    by TRPChicago on Sat Mar 08, 2014 at 07:47:48 PM PST

  •  LOL - great title (13+ / 0-)

    Hard to tell who has their panties in a tighter knot.

    The GOP in Colorado, or a few of the local crew who are certain, just certain that the precedent of NRA sponsored recall elections and grandstanding GOP Sheriffs are sure signs that Dems are going to pay for it at the polls this fall.

    "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.” — William Arthur Ward

    by LilithGardener on Sat Mar 08, 2014 at 07:53:48 PM PST

    •  Another blog has called it "War: RMGO v. GOP" (9+ / 0-)

      Still far too early to tell how things will turn out, but it's at least encouraging to see that the GOP is wrestling with this issue and possibly turning toward our position.

      "Looking back over a lifetime, you see that love was the answer to everything." — Ray Bradbury

      by We Shall Overcome on Sat Mar 08, 2014 at 08:16:25 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Or... perhaps it's just a simple matter. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        The GOP is willing to elect anti-gun legislators - not for the fact they're anti-gun.

        Rather, this is an important year to defeat the Libertarian/Conservative/Tea Party factions.  
        Lessons of Ross Perot:
        Kill them off now.
        Do not invite them to a debate.  
        Block funding, and hope they're not freakin' wealthy.
        Marginalize them with phrases like "moon bat", and use your bag of dirty tricks.

        Mainstream GOP wants illegal immigration and undocumented/uninsured/untaxed workers.
        Mainstream wants Tar Sands Oil.
        Mainstream wants Coal.
        Mainstream wants an end to the EPA.  OSHA.  All of those Nixonian programs.
        Mainstream wants Wall Street unregulated.  Untaxed.
        Same for banks.

        The "republican" elements seeking regulation, a flat tax, documented workers, Native American rights, a safe environment?

        Has NO place inside the GOP tent, and if that means they vote against guns?  Meh.

        The gun lobby is pennies on the dollar compared to industrial agriculture, construction, oil, coal and the financial centers.

        Greedy Ol' Politics.  
        Precisely what the Bill of Rights was meant to counter.

        •  whoknu made a similar point in a comment (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Sharon Wraight, oldpotsmuggler


          And it's pretty clear pro gun often = Tea Party and anti marriage equality, anti-abortion and down the line.

          "Looking back over a lifetime, you see that love was the answer to everything." — Ray Bradbury

          by We Shall Overcome on Sun Mar 09, 2014 at 01:40:15 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Two views of the same issue. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            We Shall Overcome

            Mainstream GOP wants business-as-usual.

            IF you trust the same guy who wants an unregulated financial sector, with keeping out of gender issues, and reproductive rights?

            I've a bridge to sell you in London, and we only have to drive a bit southwest to get there.

            The GOP tent, is for the Mitch McConnells of the world.

        •  Am I reading you correctly? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          If it came down to a "lesser of two evils," it sounds like you'd prefer the "Libertarian/Conservative/Tea Party faction" over "Mainstream GOP," is that correct?

          And in your estimation, the Libertarian/Conservative/Tea Party factions support the following policies (and the Mainstream GOP opposes them):
          * legal documentation for currently-illegal immigrants
          * prevent mining of tar-sands oil
          * reduce use of coal
          * support OSHA, the EPA, a safe environment
          * regulate and tax Wall Street, banks
          * no more gun controls
          * a flat tax
          * Native-American rights
          Is that correct?

          And in your estimation the Mainstream GOP (but not so much the Libertarian/ Conservative/ Tea Party factions) are funded by the industrial agriculture, construction, oil, coal and the financial centers. (The gun lobby might support the L/C/TP factions, but they are pennies on the dollar.)

          And the Bill of Rights was meant to counter greed in politics. [Which amendment(s)?]  

          Did I get that right?

    •  Probably the ones that are currently (0+ / 0-)

      unemployed as a result of it.

      Those who would sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.

      by FrankRose on Sun Mar 09, 2014 at 04:18:42 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Very interested and glad to hear this... (19+ / 0-)

    ...Given the mildness of Colorado's news gun control laws (although I am not a fan of the gun magazine limit simply because I don't think it can be effectively enforced), there is no reason that Democrats shouid lose in the general election because of those new laws.

    The extremists in the RMGO are the reason that Colorado allowed people to get their training on the Internet for their concealed carry licenses without ever proving to anyone they had ever fired a gun in their lives, much less understood even the most basis safety rules. That is one of the laws Colorado changed.

    RMGO also got passed a rule that county sheriffs could not divulge anything about the concealed permits they issue to media or even other law enforcement, including the total number of such permits issued. That rule is still on the books.

    Of course, it's not just RMGO that objects to the perfectly reasonable law requiring every gun buyer to get a background regardless of where or from whom s/he purchases a gun.

    But from your anecdotes, it appears that all the people who think Colorado is going to go red this year because of gun laws may be counting on new GOP legislative seats before the votes are counted, always a risky thing to do.

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

    by Meteor Blades on Sat Mar 08, 2014 at 08:04:54 PM PST

  •  Do the Sheriffs have standing to sue Colorado? (10+ / 0-)
    had there been any diaries reporting this?


    Chief Judge Marcia S. Krieger

    Civil Action No. 13-cv-01300-MSK-MJW

    Nov. 27, 2013
    Opinion and Order on Motion to Dismiss

    [pages 17-24]

    C. Do the Sheriffs have standing to sue the State of Colorado?

         The State also request dismissal of all claims brought by Plaintiffs who are county sheriffs because they have no standing to sue the State in their “official capacity”. The State relies upon the political subdivision doctrine which teaches that a political subdivision of a state may not sue its parent state under certain provisions of the United States Constitution. To understand the State’s argument, it is important to distinguish between claims brought by a person in an “official capacity” and those brought in a personal/individual capacity. Generally, a government official (whether elected or appointed) can assert rights in two different capacities. One pertains to the office in which the official serves. In that capacity, the official acts on behalf of, and is the representative of, the office that he or she holds. That role continues until the person no longer serves in the office, at which point, the official’s successor assumes that role. An “official capacity” claim is one that is brought by or against the person acting as the representative of, or as substitute for, the office or agency. In other words, in an official capacity claim, one can readily replace the named individual with the name of the office itself. For example, an official capacity claim brought by “John Cooke, Sheriff of Weld County,” is actually a claim being brought by the Weld County Sheriff’s Office.8 See Hafer v. Melo, 502 U.S. 21, 25 (1991).

          A government official can also assert rights that he or she has as an ordinary, private citizen. Following the prior example, a claim brought by Sheriff Cooke in an individual capacity is actually one by Mr. Cooke as a private citizen.


    Accordingly, all claims asserted by the Sheriffs in the Second Amended Complaint are DISMISSED for lack of standing.

    JOHN B. COOKE, Sheriff of Weld County, Colorado;
    TERRY MAKETA, Sheriff of El Paso County, Colorado;
    JUSTIN SMITH, Sheriff of Larimer County, Colorado;
    DAVID A. WEAVER, Sheriff of Douglas County, Colorado:
    BRUCE W. HARTMAN, Sheriff of Gilpin County, Colorado;
    KEN PUTNAM, Sheriff of Cheyenne County, Colorado;
    DENNIS SPRUELL, Sheriff of Montezuma County, Colorado;
    TIM JANTZ, Sheriff of Moffat County, Colorado;
    JERRY MARTIN, Sheriff of Dolores County, Colorado;
    MIKE ENSMINGER, Sheriff of Teller County, Colorado;
    SHAYNE HEAP, Sheriff of Elbert County, Colorado;
    CHAD DAY, Sheriff of Yuma County, Colorado;
    FRED D. MCKEE, Sheriff of Delta County, Colorado;
    LOU VALLARIO, Sheriff of Garfield County, Colorado;
    FRED HOSSELKUS, Sheriff of Mineral County, Colorado;
    BRETT L. POWELL, Sheriff of Logan County, Colorado;
    JAMES FAULL, Sheriff of Prowers County, Colorado;
    LARRY KUNTZ, Sheriff of Washington County, Colorado;
    BRIAN E. NORTON, Sheriff of Rio Grande County, Colorado;
    DUKE SCHIRARD, Sheriff of La Plata County, Colorado;
    JIM BEICKER, Sheriff of Fremont County, Colorado;
    RONALD BRUCE, Sheriff of Hindsdale County, Colorado;
    CHRIS S. JOHNSON, Sheriff of Otero County, Colorado;
    FRED JOBE, Sheriff of Custer County, Colorado;
    DONALD KRUEGER, Sheriff of Clear Creek County, Colorado;
    JAMES CRONE, Sheriff of Morgan County, Colorado;
    SI WOODRUFF, Sheriff of Rio Blanco County, Colorado;
    TOM RIDNOUR, Sheriff of Kit Carson County, Colorado;
    TOM NESTOR, Sheriff of Lincoln County, Colorado;
    STAN HILKEY, Sheriff of Mesa County, Colorado;
    FORREST FRAZEE, Sheriff of Kiowa County, Colorado;
    RICK DUNLAP, Sheriff of Montrose County, Colorado;
    TED B. MINK, Sheriff of Jefferson County, Colorado;
    DAVE STONG, Sheriff of Alamosa County, Colorado;
    FRED WEGENER, Sheriff of Park County, Colorado;
    BRUCE NEWMAN, Sheriff of Huerfano County, Colorado;
    RANDY PECK, Sheriff of Sedgwick County, Colorado;
    DOMINIC MATTIVI, JR., Sheriff of Ouray County, Colorado;
    JOHN MINOR, Sheriff of Summit County, Colorado;
    SCOTT FISCHER, Sheriff of Jackson County, Colorado;
    PETER GONZALEZ, Sheriff of Archuleta County, Colorado;
    RICK BESECKER, Sheriff of Gunnison County, Colorado;
    CHARLES “ROB’ URBACH, Sheriff of Phillips County, Colorado;
    ROD FENSKE, Sheriff of Lake County, Colorado;
    GRAYSON ROBINSON, Sheriff of Arapahoe County, Colorado;
    DAVID D. CAMPBELL, Sheriff of Baca County, Colorado;
    MIKE NORRIS, Sheriff of Saguache County, Colorado;
    AMOS MEDINA, Sheriff of Costilla County, Colorado;
    MILES CLARK, Sheriff of Crowley County, Colorado;
    DAVID ENCINIAS, Sheriff of Bent County, Colorado;
    SUE KURTZ, Sheriff of San Juan County, Colorado;
    JAMES (JIM) CASIAS, Sheriff of Las Animas County, Colorado;
    GARRETT WIGGINS, Sheriff of Routt County, Colorado;
    DOUGLAS N. DARR, Sheriff of Adams County, Colorado;

    JOHN W. HICKENLOOPER, Governor of the State of Colorado,

    The opinion said the Sheriffs had 14 days to rejoin the case as individual gun owners  (page 24), which apparently they all did.

    So that leaves 18 organizations and 3 53 individual plaintiffs.

    "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.” — William Arthur Ward

    by LilithGardener on Sat Mar 08, 2014 at 09:28:20 PM PST

  •  A little off topic (4+ / 0-)

    I was looking over the electoral map today and I put together a map without VA, OH, or FL in our column, but CO, NV, and NM in it (which means we win). CO seems like the swingiest of the three, what is your opinion?

    There is truth on all sides. The question is how much.

    by slothlax on Sat Mar 08, 2014 at 10:28:50 PM PST

    •  I can't speak to OH and FL, but my sense is that (5+ / 0-)

      CO hasn't swung to the right as far as some might think it has - there have been a lot of sensational headlines, "Succession" "Gun Fight" "Marijuana Legalization" for example, that from the outside could paint a picture of Dems in retreat.

      I think there is some truth in that, but Colorado's economy is doing well, home prices have rebounded, pot legalization is being estimated to generate close to $100 million (above the original estimate of ~ $60-$70 million) and 40% of that will be directed to school construction - a job creator and (this is speculation) possibly a rural works program, ie, building schools in poorer rural areas.

      Colorado votes rejected last year a $1bil tax increase to fund public education state wide, and I am guessing some of the reason could have been that the pot tax was going to funnel money to schools, so why have two taxes with similar objectives - granted, one tax was for school construction and the other was for school programing, hiring teachers.

      And on the GOP side, I think they are going to have a real difficult time explaining votes to shut down the Federal government - votes that shut down Rocky Mountain National Park and votes that were taken just ONE month after Colorado was hit by historic floods that devastated  cities and towns that rely on tourism.

      Travelers were already canceling trips because of the floods, and then to intentionally shut down Rocky Mountain National Park? Look up the definition of "adding insult to injury" and there should be a line up of the Colorado reps that voted to shut down the government.

      Dems hold all three branches of government in Colorado, so it seems inevitable that they can't hold on to that - but I doubt there would be a wave that entirely flips that.

      "Looking back over a lifetime, you see that love was the answer to everything." — Ray Bradbury

      by We Shall Overcome on Sun Mar 09, 2014 at 08:18:23 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  There is a difference between an individual right (10+ / 0-)

    to own a gun (a fine theoretical idea) and staring down the barrel of all your neighbors with guns (downright scary).

    That is the difference the GOP will find themselves wedged with.

    The more guns in the streets carried by people unknown, the more voters will back off from the gun freedom idea. Especially with NRA's Ted Nugent leading the parade.

    Now they have the 2nd (safety net for sloppy) Amendment, and can't be infringed to actually treat their gun like a gun and not a video game controller.

    by 88kathy on Sun Mar 09, 2014 at 04:03:39 AM PDT

  •  Whistling past graveyards (6+ / 0-)

    Personally, I think Udall is going to keep his seat, but I find the lack of commentary about Democratic positions interesting. Udall ran for office a total Obama supporter and now will not even say if he wants Obama to show up in Colorado to help him campaign for re-election. A month ago his "about" page touted his gun control record, now all mention of that has been scrubbed.

    quotes & votes
    2009 - Voted in favor of national concealed carry reciprocity between states

    2009 - Voted in favor of allowing concealed carry permit holders to carry in national parks

    2013 - Voted against the Feinstein assault weapon ban

    2013 - "Responsible gun ownership is an integral part of our Western heritage. The Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution provides for an individual right, and I am dedicated to protecting the rights of citizens to own firearms for personal protection, hunting, collecting or for other legal purposes."

    I could say that and would have voted the same way. But for that at Kos I'd be called a "gun nut" (come to think of it, I have been).

    So I'm still waiting on the diary about how guns are giving Kossacks a wedgie over Colorado. When someone who voted against an assault weapon ban, voted for a least common denominator standard for national concealed carry and who says that the 2nd is an individual right is apparently the best possible liberal for the job?

    It's little wonder a RASA-published diary (and author) is repeatedly trying to draw as much attention to the GOP side as possible. In some blue states Udall would be the GOP candidate.

    •  I don't think our diarist was writing about ... (5+ / 0-)

      ... both sides. He's highlighting GOP gun politics.

      It's true that Colorado, like so many other states, is a mixed bag, known for close statewide races and extremist GOP candidates like Ken Buck. (Who CO Sen. Michael Bennet beat in 2010. He also beat Andrew Romanoff, a fairly left Democrat well known statewide.)

      It seems also true that the GOP organizations do not want this next election driven by gun politics. With extremists on their right flank, can you blame them?

      I'm not surprised Udall is walking a tightrope. That's CO politics in this era. Purist is not the watchword for Democrats in Colorado, though it seems to be for the Rocky Mountain Gun Owners group.

      2014 is HERE. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

      by TRPChicago on Sun Mar 09, 2014 at 06:20:50 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I agree but it is nonetheless relevant (8+ / 0-)

        It just seems there is a bit of "pay no attention to that man behind the curtain" going on when we get multiple diaries on how gun politics are hurting the GOP in CO when in most circumstances a Senator like Udall would be the subject of anti-gun, anti-GOP rhetoric on Kos. Just read past diaries on the assault weapon debate in Congress and remind yourself that Udall voted against it to see how he stacks up in terms of Kossack popularity on the issue. Ditto for "2nd is an individual right" opinions among RASA members. Udall wants to strengthen enforcement of existing background check laws. When I say we should do that, I'm accused of repeating NRA talking points.

        If the election is not going to have guns as a pivotal issue, then the diaries are meaningless. If guns and the candidate stances on them are important, then the position of the right is only meaningful when compared to something else in the minds of Colorado voters. In this case, the position on the left. In terms of RASA politics, the Colorado Senate race is really a choice between a right-wing gun nut who is for national concealed carry and against assault weapon bans...and a far right-wing gun nut who has the NRA and Ted Nugent backing him.

        In matters of gun control, the political distance between Udall and the Republican contenders is probably less than the distance between Udall and the far left.

        It is worth noting that Udall's position and votes as mentioned in my comment got him an "F" rating from the NRA, which shows exactly how far right they are.

        •  Shamash - I invite you to take the other side of (7+ / 0-)

          the coin. I don't want to delude myself or anyone else.

          I am writing these diaries that focus on the gun issue within the GOP because it goes against conventional wisdom.

          The conventional wisdom is guns are bad for Dems and guns are good for GOPers.

          I think it is worthwhile to test that conventional wisdom. And I think I am doing so with concrete examples. But it's only a theory.

          And there is only so much time in the day.

          It would be doing Daily Kos a service, if others would take the other side of this coin and post diaries about why the GOP is going to beat the Dems because of the gun issue.

          I would be infinitely interested in reading about that.

          "Looking back over a lifetime, you see that love was the answer to everything." — Ray Bradbury

          by We Shall Overcome on Sun Mar 09, 2014 at 08:46:38 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I can't do that (6+ / 0-)
            It would be doing Daily Kos a service, if others would take the other side of this coin and post diaries about why the GOP is going to beat the Dems because of the gun issue.
            I think Udall is going to win, so I would not be the one to write that diary. But one of the reasons I think Udall will win is because he is positioning himself to the right rather than the left on the issue of guns. If Obama-favoring Democratic voters who have "guns" as a voting issue have a choice between someone who has the aforementioned stance and a far right Tea Party-type candidate, Udall wins hands-down. He is on this issue, a moderate Republican (or would be, back before they went extinct).

            If on the other hand he boasted a strong anti-gun stance and positioned himself on the left rather than the right, we have a small but significant test case of how Colorado Democrats vote when guns are made a central issue. The fact that he is not positioning himself on the left tells you what he or his campaign think the opinions of Colorado voters are on the issue and how important it is to them.

            •  Or, how Udall is positioning tells us he thinks (5+ / 0-)

              Colorado Dems who support gun reform (even those who do so strongly) understand the need to be tactical and are OK with certain politicians in certain races at certain times, not staking out a strong pro gun reform stance, and trust he will "evolve" over time with the electorate.

              "Looking back over a lifetime, you see that love was the answer to everything." — Ray Bradbury

              by We Shall Overcome on Sun Mar 09, 2014 at 09:41:14 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  And that's where we differ in opinion (5+ / 0-)

                I think that while the Colorado electorate is to the left of the conservative candidates, Udall is "evolving" to the right to match the electorate on this issue.

                Remember, Morse and Giron were both in Obama+ districts and both lost their recall elections because Democrats voted against them, despite Democrats turning out in greater numbers and outspending Republicans.

                There are clearly a significant number of Dems for whom this is a serious enough issue to switch votes on, and Udall is recognizing who is buttering his bread. If the opinions of Democratic voters change, I fully expect Udall to change with them. That's just the way election politics work.

                My main reason for commenting in the first place was to point out that in gun control terms, conservative infighting on the issue is hardly a win for gun control advocates. It is like claiming that a candidate who thinks abortion should be banned after 8 weeks is a "liberal" victory if all the conservative candidates think it should be banned entirely. The window on the subject is moving to the right, the only question is "how far"?

            •  Are these folks one issue voters? (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Patango, oldpotsmuggler

              I know, Shamash, that you're saying it's just one of the issues. But Progressives - who are at least liberals on the spectrum - are split. And I don't see any of us as one-issue folks. If anything, we have too many issues going at once!

              Guns, as I read the politics these days, are mostly GOP, ALEC-state issues, but certainly not entirely. When I see Mark Udall brandishing a gun at a political rally, I'd believe we're gun nuts, too. (Allison Grimes in Kentucky doesn't count. Look at the territory!)

              2014 is HERE. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

              by TRPChicago on Sun Mar 09, 2014 at 11:14:51 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  ^^^ This - I'd be interested in reading those (3+ / 0-)

            diaries too.

            What's not sufficient is any attitude of, "Trust me, I know what I'm seeing here, and I'm right because...."

            Show the evidence, that supports an opinion.

            I saw a few days ago, that Hickenlooper came out quietly for same sex marriage. Wasn't long ago that marriage equality was a sure way to rally the GOP voters, not any more.

            "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.” — William Arthur Ward

            by LilithGardener on Sun Mar 09, 2014 at 09:27:32 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  Here's a broader discussion, up thread (3+ / 0-)

      True, this is a diary about the GOP, and that was the intention. About Udall, I think we all know the gun issue is one that Dems have to tread lightly on in Colorado and certain other states. I wouldn't think that would be a surprise to anyone.

      That said, 2012/2013 was an especially bad year for gun violence and so pushing for gun reform more aggressively within that context is not as risky for Dems as it would be otherwise.

      So why didn't Udall vote more aggressively for gun reform? Because holding on to the Senate this year is going to be tough and Dems don't want to lose Udall's seat.

      Was I disappointed with Udall's votes? Yes, but because guns are not at the top of my list of why I vote Dem, I will gladly vote for Udall - wedgie free.

      "Looking back over a lifetime, you see that love was the answer to everything." — Ray Bradbury

      by We Shall Overcome on Sun Mar 09, 2014 at 08:32:11 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Bipartisan support for gun control laws in NY & CT (4+ / 0-)

        What's missing from the RKBA group thesis is any discussion of the fact that in both New York and in Connecticut, the new gun control laws were passed with bipartisan support.

        E.g. The New York state Senate has a GOP majority, so writing off the NY Safe Act as an easy Dem controlled legislature is just plain wrong. And NY's governor's office has switched back and forth many times.

        "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.” — William Arthur Ward

        by LilithGardener on Sun Mar 09, 2014 at 09:30:48 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Political currency and lingua franca. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          NY and CT have, along with MA, long been a center of US Arms makers.  All three states have for longer than I've been alive, hosted some form of anti-gun legislation.  Partly due to having a Brahmin class of wealthy industrialists, not willing to face armed opposition to their exploitive employment policies.
          Partly due to being the Port of Entry for many persons of "sub-class ethnic background".

          We don't want "them" having a gun now, do we?

          MA, has required an FOID Card, for any firearm purchase.
          CT, has their own way of limiting handguns in particular, almost to the satisfaction of NY and MA.
          NY has for a Century, gone with the Tammany Hall inspired handgun licensing.*

          In each of these states, being politically-connected, having an income or fame - if not infamy, has meant a permit is waiting. Just for the asking.
          There's a few "colorful characters" who border on infamous, who carried NYS Pistol Permits - as the Democratic Party bosses demanded issue.

          There's a lingua franca:
          that the people will accept handgun regulation without discussion, as we've outlived those persons who remember when there was no such law.
          So, what's the big deal about 3 bullets?
          That a "reasonable compromise" can always be demanded.
          What would be the big deal about not having more than 5 bullets, as it's only 2 bullets?
          Be "reasonable"... it's all we ask.

          That a message of "you're not the police" can be coupled to that "reasonable compromise".
          And if all else fails?

          We'll do it anyway, as we own the political arena, regardless of which party is in power.  
          There's an institutional racism in those three states, and agreed-upon criteria for the broad issuance of permits.
          White, is right.
          Wealthy is white, wealthy is right.
          If you're of dark complexion?
          (at one time in NYS that meant any Jew and any Italian)
          Then there was no means for you to have a pistol permit.

          If you're poor and abused, by persons hateful due to your economic class and/or color?  You need to learn your place, and not reach for peerage.

          If you have the means of being introduced to a candidate, or to a sitting politician:  "This is the person, I talked to you about" then the act of patronage - the smoothing of the way for your pistol permit - became a political currency knowing no party affiliation.

          * NJ, feeling slighted by not making the list, went even further, bordering on draconian.
          When decades of racism and inner city neglect, festered into unrest and violence, New Jersey adopted even tougher firearms laws, and joyfully prosecutes even those who have no intention of committing a crime.  Making examples of off-duty police officers, or persons deposited by their airline, due to flight cancellations.

          •  Seems no one has any trouble getting a gun in (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Sharon Wraight, oldpotsmuggler

            Chicago - is that a better way to do it? I'm being somewhat snarky, but also serious. Chicago seems like a good example of a city with more liberal access to guns (informal access) that if adopted (formally or informally) would be similar to your Northeastern cities.

            "Looking back over a lifetime, you see that love was the answer to everything." — Ray Bradbury

            by We Shall Overcome on Sun Mar 09, 2014 at 04:10:51 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  The off year remains the biggest challenge. How (5+ / 0-)

    guns play into this is tricky, because guns would seem to amplify the predicted GOP turnout advantage in the off year.  Effective GOTV is still most important, & I'm not convinced that Dems will turn out to say no to pro-gun candidates.  

    But this is still welcome news, especially for the race that's my top priority: Senate District 19, where the gun lobby had pursued a recall against Evie Hudak, who resigned to allow Jefferson County Dems to name a replacement.  They named a great person: my friend Rachel Zenzinger, & she will need our help to hold this very purple seat.  Please give what you can.

    It's time to start letting sleeping dinosaurs lie, lest we join them in extinction by our consumption of them.

    by Leftcandid on Sun Mar 09, 2014 at 07:16:53 AM PDT

  •  I work to elect Democrats in Colorado (4+ / 2-)

    you don't.

    “Conservation… is a positive exercise of skill and insight, not merely a negative exercise of abstinence and caution…” Aldo Leopold

    by ban nock on Sun Mar 09, 2014 at 07:18:45 AM PDT

  •  there is a lot of sniping (8+ / 0-)

    within the party between the two factions and the mainstream GOP do not like RMGO, they do not like them at all.

    From my view, over the past few election cycles, the mainstream party is aware of the reality of Colorado Republican base. They are generally moderate and pragmatic and have historically worked with Dems on most issues in a bipartisan way.

    Enter the Teaparty, in the guise of RMGO, who bullied (surprise!) themselves into the party and tried to change that. The RMGO is all about purity and refuses to recognize that the electorate is pretty moderate. It didn't fly well as the picks over the past few cycles imploded spectacularly - Dan Maes, Tom Tancredo, Ken Buck... So the upshot is, the Colorado GOP mainstream is trying to purge (or at least hide) their most extreme wing and that same extreme faction doesn't want to be left out. So they keep shooting their mouth off and crying foul. It is playing out publicly in the media and on the floor of the legislature as they debate the gun issues and healthcare.

    Oh, and one more interesting thing; The personhood amendment is back on the ballot in 2014 which 'they' think will bring out their base, but in reality brings out the women. Last two times (ugh!) this was on the ballot, it lost 70-30.

    Loyalty to petrified opinion never yet broke a chain or freed a human soul in this world--and never will. Mark Twain

    by whoknu on Sun Mar 09, 2014 at 08:04:41 AM PDT

  •  I voted for hurting both sides (0+ / 0-)

    I think the infighting between the factions of the Republicans has the possibility of hurting that party.  It comes down to does the losing faction vote for their party or stay home.  

    On the Dem side, I think guns being an issue in the election will be a negative.  I think that there has been plenty of evidence in all the discussions we've had on this subject to make the case that overall Colorado Dems are not proponents of gun control.

    Hence, it could hurt both.

    "It's not surveillance, it's data collection to keep you safe"

    by blackhand on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 07:52:00 AM PDT

  •  Dems running for cover over unpopular gun control (0+ / 0-)

    Its seems after a new poll out in February in Colorado over whether the democrats will be hurt this November in the elections that this indeed is the case.

    Some 69% of polled registered voters. Dem.. Rep.. And unaffiliated said they can't wait for November to oust the democrats for un constitutionally passing infringing gun control laws.

    The dems who are backed and influenced by ex mayor Michael bloomberg is holding the dems feet to the fire by the evidence of recent new legislative efforts to repeal the laws but the committees dominated by the dems have killed every bill proposed.

    One can assume the dems are going for the hail Mary this year by continuing to buy into east coast politics and not listening to their constituants or further more the gloomy polls of their impending doom.

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