The new ABC/Washington Post poll was released Tuesday and it asked Americans about their positions on several issues including universal background checks for gun purchases. The poll found 91% favor background checks.
A bill requiring background checks passed the Senate Judiciary Committee Tuesday on a 10-8 vote. All Democrats voted for the bill, not a single Republican on the committee voted for background checks. The Republican Senators are banking on what the NRA and its GOP supporters call the “Connecticut affect” to wear off.
In Colorado Monday, the state Senate passed a group of gun laws including one that would require background checks for gun sales in Colorado including gun shows. Republicans did everything they could in Colorado to kill all those bills as well. Fortunately elected a majority of Democrats in both Houses in Colorado, and Democrats are not waiting for the NRA’s Connecticut affect to blow over.
Republicans defy the will of 91% of Americans
Very few things ever receive support of 91% of Americans in any poll. Only 85% like Italian Food, for example, according to the Rachel Maddow Show. Yet when it comes to gun violence following the slaughter of twenty 6-year old children and six of their teachers in Newtown, most Americans including a majority of Republicans, support stricter gun laws including background checks.
For some reason, however, Republicans who hold office are totally out of step and out of sync with their Republican base. Could it be something in the water in Washington? Are communists putting something in their food? Is there a fungus in the HVAC ducts in Republican offices?
The reason Republicans who hold office are so out of step on these issues is they are beholden to the NRA. Even though the NRA had a terrible success ratio on candidates they backed last November, Republicans cower in the presence of NRA spokesman Wayne LaPierre. When the NRA, which represents gun manufacturers and retailers, says “jump” a Republican asks" how high" on the way up.
The political question is who long can a political party defy 91% of the population on important issues and not pay a price at the polls. The answer is not for long. Democrats are enjoying the Elephant Party commit suicide.
Connecticut Affect not going away
Republicans might be making a big miscalculation taking the side of the NRA against the nation. Sure other mass killings in America failed to result in any change in gun laws with few exceptions, however, Newton was different. It is in the DNA of Americans and all people to protect their young. Gun manufacturers and sellers profits do not trump twenty dead innocent children—except with elected Republicans.
Today, a group of cyclists arrived in Washington from Newtown. Wednesday, a new national women’s group will “Take the Hill” to let Congress know it must act to protect our children.
Republicans may block reform now, but they can’t block it forever. For decades, only the NRA spoke on the issue of guns. It is different now. The people are mobilized and they are getting financial support. If the GOP is smart, it would get on the right side of history. Fortunately for Democrats, they may not be that smart.