For some reason, politicians seem to think that compromising on core principles to placate their political opposition or the media will buy them votes and/or praise and good will in the press. It’s a fool’s errand that literally never works and only serves to demoralize their base of supporters.
You’d think that an experienced veteran of some brutal political battles like Texas Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick would have absorbed that lesson by now. You’d be wrong.
Patrick has apparently made the political calculation that preemptively conceding ground to gun control advocates will somehow benefit him or Texas Republicans. All his push has done is bring down a sh!tstorm of opprobrium on his head and given his political opponents the kind of opening they’d never have had otherwise.
Coming out in support of “universal” background checks in the Lone Star State was an epic own goal by the Lieutenant Governor that Patrick will be trying to live down for years to come.
C.J. Grisham, the founder of Open Carry Texas and a lead enforcer of that stridency, believes that Patrick is playing a dangerous political game of placation. “I think he wants to be seen as somebody who did something, not somebody who solved anything,” he said. “There should be no more middle ground [on guns]. Any time we talk about middle ground, we lose.” Texas is turning purple, he said, because Republican leaders have abandoned their base by failing to push for constitutional carry, in which any Texan can carry a gun without a permit. Patrick’s push for expanded background checks would only accelerate that trend in 2020. “It’s not that we’re going to start voting for Democrats; it’s that we’re going to stop voting,” Grisham said.
– Justin Miller in Will Dan Patrick’s Bare-Minimum Effort for Gun Control Go Anywhere?