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Halvorson defeat less about guns than race-based voting

Portraying her campaign as being about guns masks an undeniable truth.
Portraying her campaign as being about guns masks an undeniable truth.

Illinois Second Congressional District Representative Robin Kelly “easily won the special Democratic primary … in the race to replace the disgraced Jesse Jackson Jr. in Congress,” the Chicago Tribune reported late last month, adding Kelly was “helped by millions of dollars in pro-gun control ads from New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg's political fund.”

“Kelly framed her win as a victory for gun control forces,” the report continued, quoting the victor’s claim for "[a] message that tells the NRA that their days of holding our country hostage are coming to an end.”

But was it such a victory?

First of all, gun owner support for Kelly’s opponent, former Rep. Debbie Halvorson, was tepid at best. True, Halvorson had previously received an “A” rating from NRA, but that was scoffed at by those of us who objected to her support for ending private sales, universal background checks and registration. We wondered why the same crowd of NRA apologists who gave the Association a pass for going AWOL on the confirmation of Eric Holder because they deemed it “a waste of political capital” would invest energy and funds to elect someone who supports some of the very bills Congress has the most likely chance in passing.

And what actual support Halvorson did receive is disputed. Progressive USA claimed NRA gave her campaign $10,000. The Tribune report says “the national organization stayed out of the contest completely while the state rifle association sent out one late mailer for Halvorson.” That’s hardly enough to offset Bloomberg’s millions, but one has to question if anything would have been, and if characterizing her loss as a victory for “gun control” isn’t really a fraudulent conclusion the “progressives” have offered to claim unearned points for citizen disarmament, and to mask another inconvenient truth.

Chicago's Robin Kelly on Track to Join List of Black Women to Serve in Congress,” NPR’s “Political Junkie” blog reported. “Race became the issue when the Democratic primary election was pitting one major white candidate, former Rep. Debbie Halvorson, against a field of multiple African-American hopefuls, including Kelly. The fear among some in the black community was that Halvorson -- who represented a different district for one term until her 2010 defeat and who unsuccessfully challenged Jackson in the 2012 primary -- would have the advantage in a split black field. But some of leading black candidates, such as state Sens. Toi Hutchinson, Napolean Harris and Donne Trotter, withdrew and endorsed Kelly.”

“At first glance, Debbie Halvorson should have no business winning the Feb. 26 special election,” Politico observed. “The former Democratic congresswoman was crushed by Jackson in a primary last year. She’s a white Democrat seeking to represent a district in which 54 percent of voters are African-American.”

Indeed, the demographics show a marked disadvantage for a white candidate if race is considered as a valid motivating factor in candidate preference, and if the 2nd Congressional District’s past 30-plus years with an African-American chosen as representative is any indicator, to deny that would be to deny the obvious.

Gus Savage was the man sent to Washington from 1981 to 1993. A proponent of the bizarre theory that only white people could be racist, he eventually lost to Mel Reynolds, albeit not before accusing “racist Jews” of donating to his Reynold’s campaign, and not before accusations of his arranging a drive-by shooting of his challenger were made.

Reynolds, one of the prime backers of the 1994 federal “assault weapon” ban, held office until 1995, when he resigned after being convicted of statutory rape (“12 counts of sexual assault, obstruction of justice and solicitation of child pornography”), and after claiming the charges were racially motivated. He was subsequently convicted “on 15 unrelated counts of bank fraud and lying to SEC investigators.” And despite all that, he was still confident the voters in the 2nd District would give him another chance and threw his hat in the ring.

Jesse Jackson Jr. was the last in this trifecta, and his self-serving corruption, making him the second anti-gun prohibited person in a row to represent the 2nd, is the reason for the Kelly/Halverson matchup in the first place.

Add to all this another important bit of information, that “A snowstorm and lack of voter interest kept turnout low … reported to be around 15 percent in the city and suburban Cook,” and the crowing this was a nationally-significant sea change victory for the forces of citizen disarmament, and the death knell for NRA, can be seen for the ridiculous and wholly dishonest posturing that it is, which explains why so many anti-gunners have been screaming it from the rooftops.

Does anyone really doubt anti-gun (alleged) gun criminal Donne Trotter wouldn’t have beaten Halvorson had the contest been solely between them?

What the Halvorson loss signifies instead is a profound hypocrisy from race-based voters who continually reelect the likes of Marion Barry and anti-gun gun criminal Bobby Rush. That’s because this is the same faction that accuses white voters, who disagree with Barack Obama on matters of politics and policy, of voting against him because they’re racists.


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