Democrats Divided On Gun Legislation

Democrats Divided On Gun Legislation

This is a discussion on Democrats Divided On Gun Legislation within the The Second Amendment & Gun Legislation Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; NPR ^ | May 14, 2009 | David Welna Posted on May 14, 2009 The National Rifle Association's annual meeting kicks off in Phoenix on ...

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Thread: Democrats Divided On Gun Legislation

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    Exclamation Democrats Divided On Gun Legislation

    NPR ^ | May 14, 2009 | David Welna
    Posted on May 14, 2009

    The National Rifle Association's annual meeting kicks off in Phoenix on Thursday and its members may have good reason to party.

    The NRA has been scoring early and often on Capitol Hill despite a new president who has long supported tighter gun laws and in the face of bigger Democratic majorities in Congress.

    Democrats may enjoy a near filibuster-proof majority in the Senate, but when it comes to voting on guns, it's a party divided. In February, 22 Senate Democrats joined most Republicans to amend a District of Columbia voting rights bill so that it essentially forbids the city from restricting gun ownership. And when a GOP-backed amendment came up this week on credit card legislation that would allow carrying concealed loaded weapons in national parks, 27 Democrats voted for it.

    "Initially, it looked like we might stop that amendment," says Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois, the party's chief vote counter. "There were some encouraging votes early on, but then the momentum started moving in the other direction and became a landslide. Half of our caucus voted for it."

    Big Gun Lobby 'A Fact Of Life Here'

    Durbin says some fellow Democrats who did vote for loaded guns in national parks asked him later how many more times they'd have to face such votes. His answer: I don't know. Tellingly, all but one of the seven Democrats elected in November to seats previously held by Republicans voted for the gun measure.

    South Dakota Republican Sen. John Thune says it may well have been a tough vote. "But I think there are a lot of people here who are afraid to vote against the Second Amendment," he says. "There are a lot of red-state Democrats, in the Senate at least, who view these issues a little bit differently than some of their other members of their caucus."

    Indeed, several House Democrats had a news conference Wednesday to announce that they will try to reinstate a ban on assault weapons that expired five years ago.

    "Our gangs are getting assault weapons, our police officers are being killed, and my voice will not be shut until we have a law here that will protect the average citizen," says Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY), a lead sponsor of the assault weapons measure.

    California Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein says she'd also like to see the assault weapons ban restored but that the votes simply aren't there in the Senate and she blames the NRA.

    "The NRA is a very powerful lobby," Feinstein says. "You know, when I came here, people said, 'Oh, you gotta watch out for big oil, big labor.' I found it was big guns, and that's just a fact of life here."

    Fear Or A Shift In Public Sentiment?

    But others espousing tighter gun laws say lawmakers are overly fearful of the NRA.

    Paul Helmke of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence says, "A lot of politicians do fear the NRA. The NRA, I think though, has become more of a paper tiger. I think they really have less clout today than they used to, and I think a lot of what they're trying to do is to get as much as they can before they fully lose that clout."

    NRA spokesperson Rachel Parsons counters that it's simply untrue that the group has lost any standing. She says there may be less clamor for new gun laws now, but gun owners are not about to let down their guard.

    "While President Obama said that he just doesn't have the support for gun bans in Congress right now, he still says that that's one of his top priorities," Parsons says. "Gun owners know that. That's why they're going out in droves, purchasing firearms and ammunition across the country."

    And although police officers in Oakland and Pittsburgh have been killed in recent weeks by gunmen armed with assault weapons, Senator Durbin says lawmakers appear unmoved.

    "The climate when it comes to debating guns in Congress is very negative. People don't want to talk about it," he says.

    Durbin calls it fear. But Sen. John Cornyn, a Texas Republican, says it has more to do with a shift in public sentiment against tougher gun laws. "Democrats seem like they've moved toward Republicans on these issues because they know where the country is," Cornyn says.

    Judging by the votes taken so far, easing restrictions on guns may be one of the few issues in Congress this year with truly bipartisan backing.
    Former Army Infantry Captain; 25 yrs as an NRA Certified Instructor; Avid practitioner of the martial art: KLIK-PAO.


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    VIP Member Array JAT40's Avatar
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    A glimmer of good news, hope the bipartisanship holds. Keep a watchful eye on end-a-rounds.
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    The strength of the NRA, the coming storm in D.C., reasons to join and support the NRA...NOW!
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    Good article. We still mustn't let our guard down.


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    I know I am going to get nailed to the wall for saying this, I am a registered Democrat. That being said I am also a member of the NRA, have my CCW permit, and you can have my guns when you pry them from my cold dead fingers. The numbers don't add up. Gun laws do not reduce crime, they almost always increase it. Gun control should be a no brainer, the only people who support it either have something to prove, something to gain, or are in a state of delusion.

    Maybe one day we will live in a world of rainbows and unicorn farts, and when that day comes I will proudly mount my guns on the wall in case and tell my grand children what they did. Until that day comes though, we live in a dirty, dangerous world and I will not go quietly when the BG comes to harm me and mine .

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    Exclamation Let me clarify...

    Quote Originally Posted by Akross View Post
    I know I am going to get nailed to the wall for saying this, I am a registered Democrat. That being said I am also a member of the NRA, have my CCW permit, and you can have my guns when you pry them from my cold dead fingers. The numbers don't add up. Gun laws do not reduce crime, they almost always increase it. Gun control should be a no brainer, the only people who support it either have something to prove, something to gain, or are in a state of delusion.

    Maybe one day we will live in a world of rainbows and unicorn farts, and when that day comes I will proudly mount my guns on the wall in case and tell my grand children what they did. Until that day comes though, we live in a dirty, dangerous world and I will not go quietly when the BG comes to harm me and mine .

    I am sorry. This thread isn't meant to be a political SHOT at any forum members that are from the democrat party. Not at all.

    If you'll notice, a number of democrats are the sole reason we still have the position of strength that we do have. Those elected from pro gun states who actually do represent their constituencies are to thank for standing firm against their anti gun colleagues.

    We in the republican party also have our share of RINOS (Republicans In Name Only) who are the bane of our freedoms and against whom we must also continually struggle. Were I facing an election featuring a verifiably anti gun republican vs. a verifiably pro gun democrat I'd probably for the first time in my adult life, vote for the democrat. That may infuriate others on various issues like the abortion folks, but my FIGHT is for the 2nd Amendment.
    Former Army Infantry Captain; 25 yrs as an NRA Certified Instructor; Avid practitioner of the martial art: KLIK-PAO.

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    Member Array heph's Avatar
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    All too often people on one end of the political spectrum demonize those on the other side, assuming that a given label comes with a set of beliefs that are carved in stone. People are obviously a lot more complex than that. Constructive dialogue will go a lot farther than name calling when dealing with those who would limit our rights.


    Quote Originally Posted by Akross View Post
    I know I am going to get nailed to the wall for saying this, I am a registered Democrat. That being said I am also a member of the NRA, have my CCW permit, and you can have my guns when you pry them from my cold dead fingers. The numbers don't add up. Gun laws do not reduce crime, they almost always increase it. Gun control should be a no brainer, the only people who support it either have something to prove, something to gain, or are in a state of delusion.

    Maybe one day we will live in a world of rainbows and unicorn farts, and when that day comes I will proudly mount my guns on the wall in case and tell my grand children what they did. Until that day comes though, we live in a dirty, dangerous world and I will not go quietly when the BG comes to harm me and mine .

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    Get more people to join the NRA so that the people "up there" see where we stand! I have been working with a couple people here. One of which owns over 11 hand guns, 15 rifles, and 4 shotguns. I don't understand, he loves his guns so much yet isn't a member. I will be informing him about the NRA's "easy pay life" program where you can become a life member by paying 25 bucks each quarter until you are paid up to 1k. Great way for people with less income to show their support. Get out there and get more people to join!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Akross View Post
    I know I am going to get nailed to the wall for saying this, I am a registered Democrat. That being said I am also a member of the NRA, have my CCW permit, and you can have my guns when you pry them from my cold dead fingers. The numbers don't add up. Gun laws do not reduce crime, they almost always increase it. Gun control should be a no brainer, the only people who support it either have something to prove, something to gain, or are in a state of delusion.

    Maybe one day we will live in a world of rainbows and unicorn farts, and when that day comes I will proudly mount my guns on the wall in case and tell my grand children what they did. Until that day comes though, we live in a dirty, dangerous world and I will not go quietly when the BG comes to harm me and mine .
    I think that the part of the country you hail from your demographic is pretty common. I was raised in about an hour south of Cleveland, Ohio. My parents were both registered Democrats, factory workers, union supporters etc. Even though they are registered Dem's their core beliefs (like most people I think) are somewhat conservative leaning. Dad was about as pro-gun as you can get.

    This "gun control" talk really has nothing to do with Democrat or Republican. It is all about elitists wanting to disarm the common man. When the common man no longer is armed the elitists can do to us whatever they want but until then they fear the common man up to a point.

    Your party affiliation doesn't matter to me, what does matter is that you are here at DC and you are one of the "good guys".


    Be Safe,

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    We must remember, above all else, we are Americans!

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    Thanks for the post, and I’m glad the NRA is making inroads.

    I use to be a Democrat, and changed party affiliation after the Jimmy Carter administration embarrassment.

    Party affiliation has less to do with appreciation of 2A, and firearms, than the area of the US they are from.

    Those from the Northeastern US and California “left coast” are less likely to endorse lessoning firearms laws. Those form the Midwest and the South are.

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    Member Array fatcat's Avatar
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    Maybe more and more people are finally seeing the light. I must say I've run into more people who generally vote D but have become decidedly pro-gun. And a quick look at the Ds in office and you see a real divide among them when it comes to gun control.

    Now is the time however to keep pushing them, complacency is not a place to be but I don't have to tell anyone here that.

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    Exclamation Ummmmm nope

    Quote Originally Posted by fcolins357 View Post
    We must remember, above all else, we are Americans!
    The last 20 years I have spent as an educator has shown me that unfortunately we have lost that unifying quality. We are no longer "Americans!" Now we are "African-Americans," "Cuban-Americans," "Haitian-Americans," "Italian-Americans," "Arab-Americans," (which in itself opens a new set of comments), you name it, we're not just "Americans," anymore. This divisiveness is something I feel is part of a plan (yeah, I'm the ultimate conspiracy theorist ) that has been underway since the liberals infested the school system. Everybody is always encouraged to revel in their heritage INSTEAD of "assimilate" into American culture. It's not going to change now because it has become intergenerational. The divisiveness starts there and flows outward to include embracing absolutely anti-American ideology and expressing it as an unshakeable positive. That is only the very tip of an unimaginably enormous iceberg. It's not going to stop. In fact the reality is that the entire agenda is unstoppable. We can only battle it as best we can and never give up. It's okay, the war has already been won.
    Former Army Infantry Captain; 25 yrs as an NRA Certified Instructor; Avid practitioner of the martial art: KLIK-PAO.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ExSoldier View Post
    The last 20 years I have spent as an educator has shown me that unfortunately we have lost that unifying quality. We are no longer "Americans!" Now we are "African-Americans," "Cuban-Americans," "Haitian-Americans," "Italian-Americans," "Arab-Americans," (which in itself opens a new set of comments), you name it, we're not just "Americans," anymore. This divisiveness is something I feel is part of a plan (yeah, I'm the ultimate conspiracy theorist ) that has been underway since the liberals infested the school system. Everybody is always encouraged to revel in their heritage INSTEAD of "assimilate" into American culture. It's not going to change now because it has become intergenerational. The divisiveness starts there and flows outward to include embracing absolutely anti-American ideology and expressing it as an unshakeable positive. That is only the very tip of an unimaginably enormous iceberg. It's not going to stop. In fact the reality is that the entire agenda is unstoppable. We can only battle it as best we can and never give up. It's okay, the war has already been won.
    Yes....it is just the tip of the iceberg.

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    I'm About Up to Here ...

    I'm up to here with this "group hug" thing about how we should all get along because we are all Americans. I need someone to explain to me how anyone can be pro 2A and still voted for this Dem Pres. He is the most radical left winger in our lifetimes and his VP is no better.
    He comes from a state where CC is not allowed. What part of that doesn't anyone understand?
    When we lose our "rights" then you will learn.
    If they take away our ability to defend ourselves and the wolf comes knocking you not going to give a hoot about abortion, the War on Terror, whether you are in a union, losing your job, or if you have one, that you'll be taxed to support ACORN, the ACLU, the Brady bunch and every other "American" who has their hand out for a government donation which is your tax dollar.
    There is a better chance of the Heller decision being overturned before Rowe vs Wade (1973) which since has had a few conservatives in the White House.

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