With last night’s electoral victories, Hillary Clinton remains the Democratic Party’s presumptive presidential nominee. Barring cataclysmic legal troubles relating to her illegal emails or damning information about illegal activities recovered from deleted files — and maybe even then — Ms. Clinton will be asking the nation to elect her President. She will have to do so as a gun control crusader. Drawing on recent history, Forbes contributor Frank Miniter reckons her public embrace of civilian disarmament will hurt her chances . . .
In 2004, presidential candidates tramped around rural states thumping their chests and boasting they’ve gutted more deer and bagged more pheasants than their rivals, and anti-gun Congressmen suddenly became gun-shy. Just four years before, then-candidate Vice President Al Gore, in an interview in Outdoor Life magazine, wouldn’t even answer my questions, “Do you hunt? Do you fish?” As the 2004 election neared Senator John Kerry made sure a camera caught him when he went pheasant hunting.
Such things would not have occurred just a few years earlier. Kerry even answered my questions for an Outdoor Life sportsmen’s voter article by saying he owned an “assault weapon,” a boast that was used against him. (When The New York Times asked about the rifle Kerry backed off the claim and said an aide had made a mistake.)
In the 2006 elections, Lasorte said, “The only federal campaign we could find where gun ban/prohibition was a campaign issue touted by a candidate was in Illinois and that candidate lost . . .”
This thinking also caused Hillary to be careful with the gun issue in her 2008 primary bid.
But now Hillary is all in against gun rights at a time when gun ownership in America has been rising for at least a decade and now surpasses 100 million gun owners. Hillary has even made her desire to repeal the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA) into a common part of her stump speeches. She says the PLCAA gives gun makers “carte blanche” protection from civil liability, which is such a whopper that Politifact looked into this and ruled Clinton’s claim to be “false.”
If Ms. Clinton goes up against Ted Cruz for the election, you can bet dollars to donuts that the Texas Senator will exploit the Former First Lady’s fall into the arms of gun control crusaders; Senator Cruz will attack Ms. Clinton’s “I support the Second Amendment but–” waffling like a chum-crazed shark attacking a hapless tuna.
If it’s Donald Trump competing for the presidential prize, same thing — only The Donald will be more like a Tasmanian devil chasing an angry sheep in a china shop. Or something like that.
Not that gun control is likely to be the deciding issue in the next presidential election. Unless, like Al Gore’s defeat in Tennessee, it is. Watch this space . . .