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The Death Of The Gun Lobby

9.16.15

Today, in numerous places, a story by Associated Press reporter, Jonathan Cooper, appeared about the “turning tide” of gun control. Some quotes follow:

“It’s long been conventional wisdom that fighting for gun control is a good way to end a politician’s career.But advocates of tighter gun laws are pointing to a pair of victories in the Pacific Northwest as evidence that the tide may be shifting.”

“We are seeing it again and again, that this is actually a winning issue and you can vote to protect the American public and make the American public safe, and your political career will flourish,” said John Fein­blatt, president of Everytown for Gun Safety, an advocacy group backed by millions from billionaire Michael Bloomberg, the former New York mayor.

One might conclude that the end is near for supporters of the Second Amendment, especially when coupled with some other quotes from Willamette Week and Rolling Stone Magazine .

From a Willamette Week cover:

“Oregon gun lobbyists know they must change their ways or become a dying breed” and “…state gun lobbyists are finding themselves on the defensive”

In the same story, they quote a local NRA lobbyist:

“After last week, he sees tougher times ahead. ‘This is my most difficult session” he says. “We’ve never had these outside forces before.”

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Another gun lobbyist is quoted as saying  “It’s become painfully clear we’re not going to win the public relations battle.”

In a separate Willamette Week edition with the headline “Under Fire…The NRA is taking hits from foes and friends alike.” they state:

“Not long ago the National Rifle Association was arguably the most powerful lobby on Capitol Hill, but lately it just doesn’t seem to be able to strike fear into the hearts of politicians.”

“For the NRA ,the political terrain is changing all too radically. For decades the organization has successfully blocked even modest gun control laws. But now the climate of fear and intimidation it created is crumbling and gun control groups are talking optimistically about chances for bans on semi-automatic assault weapons and gun possession by minors.” “In fact, legal scholars have repeatedly pointed out that the (2nd) amendment contains no substantial barriers to federal, state or local gun control laws.”

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A Rolling Stone article reported:

“But despite the enduring pathology of gun worship, it’s clear to everyone, even the NRA-that the political ground is shifting in the most gun glutted nation on earth. New Jersey, Connecticut, Minnesota and Virginia all enacted gun control legislation this year.” This was followed by :

“Campaigning in New Jersey…in October, Hillary Clinton said “We’ve got the gun lobby and the NRA on the run.”

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It would certainly seem that supporters of gun rights are losing their battles and our best days are behind us.

Except consider this, the first set of quotes from Willamette Week are from an article published in April of 1999!

The second set were published in February of 1994!

The Rolling Stone quotes are from December of 1993!

The fact is, that while Oregon suffered a serious setback in 2015 with the passage of a bill paid for by a New York billionaire, the reports of the demise of the pro-gun forces are, to say the least, premature.

The AP article linked above said: Last year in Washington, voters overwhelmingly supported mandatory background checks on private gun sales. Lawmakers in Oregon approved similar legislation this year, and last week it became clear there wouldn’t be political consequences.”

Of course what the author left out is that, much like in Oregon, Washington’s law is largely ignored and unenforced, and to suggest that Oregon’s law comes with “no political consequence” simply ignores what we pointed out to the writer; the fact that most counties have expressed opposition to the law and several counties, including both in Prozanski’s district, have said they will not enforce it. Sheriff’s all over the state have stated the law is pointless, probably not constitutional and will not be enforced by them.  It’s pretty hard to not see that as a “political consequence.”

Most of the rest of the country is moving towards more pro-gun legislation.  The Oregon legislature’s hard left rudder to attack the rights of Oregonians is hardly the last word in this matter. Remember, not a single Republican voted for SB 941, and while left wing extremists control the legislature right now, the pendulum always swings. Look at this article from 2006.

The fact is, that while Oregon liberals did succumb to the dollars waved under their noses, it came at enormous expense to them and, while they can claim victory for the bill’s passage, it will have little impact on people’s behavior.

In spite of what the lapdog media says, pro-gun forces are not going away.

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