The Lincoln Plawg - the blog with footnotes

Politics and law from a British perspective (hence Politics LAW BloG): ''People who like this sort of thing...'' as the Great Man said

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Monday, September 13, 2004

NRA rules, OK?

The measure of the moral nullity of politics is to be found in the expiry of the assault weapon ban [1].

The San Francisco Chronicle today gives some history and runs through some of the current actors.

Apparently Congressional leaders warned Clinton of NRA reprisals if the ban was passed. In the 1994 general election, the Dems lost 54 House seats, and 19 of 24 incumbents (all Dems?) targeted by the NRA lost (said the NRA...).

Now, the current GOP leadership is opposed to the ban; but evidently, on this issue, the Dem leadership is mighty relieved it's the minority party. As the DEWDROPs' Darling Nancy Pelosi:
I think members will be voting their districts and will be where they have always been on this issue. Those who have supported the ban will continue to support the ban. Those who have opposed it will continue to oppose it, would be my read on the situation. I don't think there is much more to it than that.

The Duke of Plaza-Toro school of leadership!

They're all frit - including Kerry, with gun-toting swing-state voters to consider (the Jed Clampetts of West Virginia who still shoot their food, for instance...).

Come back Benito, all is forgiven...

  1. On August 10, I spent some time unpicking the legislative history, and looking at Kerry's position on the matter. All very far from straightforward.


The New York Times ed board blame Bush - and only Bush. Total lack of nuance.

Interesting that the law enforcement lobby has been totally ineffective on the issue, when crime is generally such a hot-button issue.

Other pieces ban expiry pieces here, here and here.

MORE (September 14)

How to explain the sudden friskiness of Kerry on the assault weapons issue - which seems to have started just as the ban lapsed!

Jodi Wilgoren today reports Kerry's speech yesterday as
the second time in four days that Mr. Kerry chose to focus on the assault-weapons ban, a departure from months in which he mainly mentioned guns only to talk about being a lifelong hunter.

But gives no clue as to why Kerry should forswear his previous Trappism on the subject. He was never going to get the NRA's endorsement; Congressional Dems running in gun-slinging states or districts will surely suffer as much from his raising the subject now as they would if he'd spoken out since January.

Not to mention Kerry's own needs in, say, West Virginia.

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