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By JD

I am a registered Democrat and I vote for Democrats. Not exclusively, but if every vote I had ever cast was counted, there would be more votes for Democrats than Republicans. I am also a gun owner and a strong supporter of the Second Amendment and the right to keep and bear arms.  Some of you reading this probably think that I’m suffering from a rather severe case of cognitive dissonance; I assure you I’m not . . .

The simple fact of the matter is that I’m not a single-issue voter. Rather, there are a number of issues that I care about and consider when evaluating a political candidate. Sometimes I prefer a Democrat and sometimes I prefer a Republican.  Further, not every Democratic candidate favors gun control. While it is very difficult (if not impossible) for me to vote for a Democrat who does emphasizes gun control, it’s equally difficult for me to vote for most Republicans.

As a supporter of the RKBA, it concerns me how gun-owning Democrats are treated by the gun community. Gun forums provide some of the best examples of the dismissive treatment Democrats receive. Rather than being welcomed, the Democrat voter is more likely to be shouted down and told how he isn’t smart enough to understand that by voting Democrat he is voting to give up his guns.

I’m enough of a gun nut that I still visit the forums and websites and just avoid the political discussion altogether.  But what about those Democrats who are perhaps interested in learning more about guns and come across these comments while searching Google? Isn’t it possible that they would be put off by the way they see Democrats being discussed and the firestorm that ensues when someone actually admits that they voted Democrat?

The point I want to make is that alienating Democrats and questioning their intelligence is not the way to preserve the RKBA. In fact, alienating Democrats and making them feel as though they aren’t part of the gun community harms the RKBA. Think about it – if every Democrat was for gun control and every Republican was for the RKBA, then we as gun owners would be perilously close to losing some of our rights. However, if just half the Democrats supported the RKBA along with all Republicans then there would be no need to worry about losing our rights.

I believe that getting more Democrats to support the RKBA should be a priority for gun owners. The more Democratic gun owners that exist, the more likely it becomes that the Democratic Party as a whole will change its stance on gun control. Furthermore, those who favor gun control want us to isolate ourselves and alienate anyone who might be on the fence about the issue. The smaller our group becomes, the easier it will be to pass gun control legislation. For this reason, any gun owner should be welcomed with open arms regardless of their voting habits or personal beliefs because that person will be less likely to vote for a candidate who supports gun control.

Our ultimate goal as gun owners, and the only way to guarantee the RKBA doesn’t go away, should be to gain enough support for the RKBA across both parties that it ceases to be a political issue outside of a few zealots. Alienating potential gun owners because they aren’t single-issue voters or wouldn’t fit in with the NRA crowd will only hinder achieving this goal. I fear that if we as gun owners don’t become a more diverse group (politically and socially) by welcoming new members to the club that we face losing many of the rights we have today.

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335 COMMENTS

  1. Amen to that. I’ve left many a gun forum for *daring* to have a similar opinion. Its not that I swung left, its that the Republican party swung right. What’s a centrist 2A supporter to do?

    • Here in NJ, all gun control laws are shoved down our throats by a straight party line vote. Democrats have been the party of civilian disarmament since the 1960’s. If you are person of the gun, there is no other choice. If you don’t want to be a Republican, become an Independent. A candidate’s view on gun control should be your first priority, and everything else comes second. (But be careful of the Manchins and Gores out there, that sell us out to their party platform). Also, watch out which church you attend. I resigned from the United Methodist Church years ago after it gave a grant to start Handgun Control Inc.

    • Get with other centrist Democrats and throw out Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, Barack Obama, Hilary Clinton, Dianne Feinstein, Chucky Schumer, etc. etc. and all of the anti-2a leaders of the Democrat Party.

      I admit I have a hard time separating the sounds of the centrist Democrats from the overwhelming anti-gun screams coming from the “progressive” leaders of that party. I am not overly fond of many of the leaders of the GOP, but at least their default mode is not anti-2a.

  2. “I am a registered Democrat and I vote for Democrats, and [I am] a strong supporter of the Second Amendment and the right to keep and bear arms.”

    You can’t be for liberty and then vote for anti-liberty politicians.

    • Not all Democrats are anti-liberty. In fact, not all Republicans are pro-liberty.

      Both parties have issues. That said, I see a lot more problems on the Dems side than Republicans these days. I am wary of both parties, just more wary of one than the other.

      They both need a lot of house-cleaning. However, while the Republicans are beginning to see some change it seems like the Dems are doubling down on failed policies. They really need to kick out the “progressives” and outright socialists and get back to being the party of the “little guy”. Something they haven’t really behaved like in well over 20 years now.

      • Good point. I was raised in a Democrat family back when that party was for the middle class and working class folks. Now at the national level, they explicitly run against working folks, and they even look down their noses at them. Their socialist policies are aimed at hurting the middle class. It s become the perry of the very wealthy and the subsidized poor, and guess who gets stuck with the bill for most of that subsidizing–the guy in the middle, who really can no longer afford it.

        I put off becoming a Repub for years because they suck in other ways, but the current Dem party is so horrible now, I haven’t voted for one in 10 years.

        • I cannot stomach becoming a Republican. I tried it for a couple of years and they just do too bad of a job for me to be affiliated with them. I keep an open mind but the last 10 years or so I have voted almost exclusively for them. The one exception is local races. If it is between a Republican and Liberatarian, I vote for the Liberatarian. If it is between a Republican and Democrat, I vote for the Republican. I have cast one Democrat vote since 2000.

          Sadly, even 20 years ago the Dems were changing into what they are today. It was not fun watching the transformation. Until they remember they are supposed to be the party of the working class, the blue collar, the everyday Joe Average, they will not get my vote except for the extreme exception.

      • I’m 65 years old, and I have yet to see a Democrat or a Republican who is actually Pro-Liberty. They’re just fighting over whether the emperor’s throne is emblazoned with a D or R.

      • As long as the DNC is controlled by the Progressives, they will never give up on civilian disarmament. They are collectivist authoritarians. Having the little people retain any measure of tangible power and autonomy is completely antithetical to their world view. They will never be happy until all the proles are packed into urban hell holes where they can be watched and controlled, living where and how they want us to live, reading what they want us to read, eating what they want us to eat.

        There are authoritarians in the GOP too, of course. We need libertarian pushes in both parties. Fortunately, I think more and more young people are starting to understand what the Progressives are doing to this country.

        • “There are authoritarians in the GOP too, of course. We need libertarian pushes in both parties.”

          No, that’s putting lipstick on Frankenstein’s Monster.

          To get to Liberty from here, we need to turn 90 degrees from the one-dimensional R-D paradigm. Thankfully, we still have secret ballots, so, when you’re in the booth and nobody’s looking, click (or punch) the L, then don’t tell anybody! When they ask, just say, “I voted for the one I think is the best.” If they pressure you, say, “I don’t have to tell you. Am I being detained?” 😉

    • So you shouldn’t vote at all? because it isn’t like either of the main parties or most of the minor parties don’t have a single anti-liberty position.

    • Most republicans are pretty anti-liberty for the sake of crime or morality. All depends on whether you agree with the ends of the restriction.

    • Because there are some politicians who are on the side of liberty right? Wake up. The political dynasties in this nation want to quash your freedom so they can keep right on getting re-elected.

  3. Ironically, my entry was about how I became a one issue voter.

    All the same, yes, I am a bit tired of the Democrat bashing that goes on. I still hold to a few liberal beliefs even though I typically find myself right-of-the-center these days.

    It seems like a majority of the population is pro-gun. It is the Democratic POLITICIANS that seem to be anti-gun. At some point they need to keep getting punished over this that they finally take it off their platforms. As it is, many of them are running away from that position but since it still seems key to many platforms in blue states I don’t think it is enough.

    • Back in 2012, 37% of registered Democrats were willing to tell complete strangers that they were gun owners and 42% were willing to admit to the same group of pollsters that they had guns in their house even if they wouldn’t cop to being the owner. GOP voters’s numbers were 38% and 47% respectively if I recall correctly.

      I’m a Liberal who got hit square between the shoulder blades by the Firearms plank in 2012. If that is what Corey Booker could come up with as a Mayor and Potential Senator (he got the nod for NJ’s vacant Senate seat) and is what is embraced by the DNC (it is) then all it would take is for the Greens or the Justice Party to stand firmly for the right for folks to own firearms and the DNC would potentially blow away as it would have lost almost a third of it’s voting base.

    • “It is the Democratic POLITICIANS who seem to be anti-gun”. Quite so. And it is the POLITICIANS who make the laws. And it is the “I am pro-gun, but I am a Democrat” voters who make them POLITICIANS by voting them into office. Pointing that is not “dismissive” or insulting, it is a bare fact.

      • Because pro-gun is not always every voter’s top priority.

        Just because I have become a single issue voter does not mean I expect everyone else will. I wish they would, but I know better.

        • I’ll go with that–but when the [literal] enablers of the gun grabbing politicos ask for my sympathy and/or support as a fellow 2A advocate, it just doesn’t compute with me.

  4. This is what happens when we knowingly or unknowingly define ourselves as “liberal”, “conservative”, “Democrat”, “Republican”…

    There is cognitive dissonance because many of things on both platforms end badly when taken to their logical conclusions…

    But by all means, let’s continue to box ourselves in and keep the label generation going!

  5. I’m not sure, but I do believe this has to be one of the absolute worst posts of Demosoviet pablum misinformation I’ve ever read.

      • The Dems don’t need anyone “make it harder” for them to “switch sides” on the 2A issue. The Party leadership does it all for them. It’s a matter of record.

      • @dakiwi13, wait, what? So you think that by speaking the truth it will run Demoturds off? THEN SO BE IT.

    • Agreed. WWhenever Republicans start taking advice from liberals on how to behave, what policies to support and what demographics to reach out to, then Republicans lose. Just ask Presidents Dole, McCain, and Romney.

      • @Jonathan-Houston, very true. And don’t forget to add “no new taxes” Bush, Sr. Placating the Demosovs didn’t serve him well then either.

  6. Word.

    Those of you who think the author is insane for owning guns and voting D ought to check out some demographic charts.

    Hate to be the voice of reality ,but the White Guy voting base is rapidly eroding -as is the GOP who relies on that voting bloc. More and more minorities and women are voting, and the GOP repeatedly is on the wrong side of nearly every issue those new voters care about. Pretty soon the Democrats will have a permanent lock on the White House .

    The GOP is a stock on the decline. We can either as gun owners diversify the political portfolio and give women and minority voters a reason to support the Second Amendment by backing the Dems-or we can keep riding the “Gays go to hell / illegal immigrants to jail” train all the way to insolvency.

    Before someone pipes up about how illegal immigrants should be deported and arrested, I’d like to hear a logistically feasable plan for rounding up tens of millions of undocumented residents. It’s not about politics anymore, it’s a practical reality that these people are a part of American society whether you and I want them to be or not. It’s cheaper to dispense with the pretense of “cracking down” and just make them citizens.

    We need to dispense with the divisive bull and spend that energy winning the hearts and minds of Democrat voters. If we don’t, the alternative is seeing the RKBA deleted from our national consciousness.

    By the way, at the national level the GOP is equally as bad regarding gun rights as the Democrats. I bring you Mark Kirk, Ronald Reagean , and George HW Bush (who signed the importation ban ) .

    So no, the GOP is not the White knight for gun rights , any more then the Democratic Party has always stood for racial equality.

    • While I agree that we need to attract more of the people that are currently attracted by the Democrat Party, we need to attract them to our ideas. It would be nice to convert the DP to a pro-gun party, but that’s less likely than getting minorities and women to be pro-gun, and pro-freedom.

      • That approach is a non starter.

        Why would a woman vote for a GOP candidate who says she doesn’t have the right to control her reproductive decisions?

        As a big strong man, let me say that if I had to choose between national concealed carry and being ordered by my government what to do in my own bedroom, I’d vote against outcome two every time.

        We need to separate politics and civil rights. Once we make it clear via modern marketing principles that having guns is better then not, the “party problem” will solve itself when those same minority and female voters ask the tough questions we’ve been posting here all along.

        • Straw man alert.

          No one that I know of says any woman can’t control her own reproductive decisions. There are, however, people who, once the woman had made a decision, want to protect the life that has been created.

          You’re going to get old and weak, so the fact that you’re ‘a big strong man’ now is irrelevant. Although I do note that you evidently are willing to throw those who are small, weak, and female under the bus. But again, no one is suggesting that anyone tell you what to do in your bedroom (although there are people who would prefer that whatever you do in your bedroom, straight or not, stays in the bedroom).

          The problem with your ‘separate politics and civil rights’ idea is that both politics and civil rights are subjective, not objective. And both depend on what premises you start with.

    • Enforce THE LAW and they will self-deport in mass. Just as they did in massive # during the Obuma economic downturn. Take away the gravy train and they will leave.

      The stupid are forcibly put on a bus/train/plane and deported. You’re willing to fund providing these deadbeats food, housing, medical care then calm we can’t afford to deport their butts. Get a backbone.

      If they are in the US it is because they have a better/easier life here than in the cesspool they came from. Therefore they have had a HUGE GIFT bestowed up them. Many have had years of education at huge expense. Nutrition, Health care. Now they need to get the hell out and go fix their nation. If you want to arm them DO SO. Perhaps you can go down there and help them fight.

      • If you think deporting them back to their original “cesspool” is going to solve the problem, good luck.

        What wouldn’t you do for your family? Do you really think a plane ride back to their home country is a deterrent for deportees when the alternative is starvation and probable death for their families?

        A recent DHS report I read stated matters plainly. Some of these folks have made the trip to and from their home countries often enough to qualify for frequent flier miles. It’s so bad that our deportations are exporting US street gangs to other countries, who then decide to make the trip up here for “the good life” after they join.

        No, arrests and deportation is not a viable solution, no matter how ones personal opinion may be on the subject. We may as well try to deport migratory birds .

        • First thing first, you have to stop talking about any type of Amnesty or steps toward Amnesty period. Anytime a D or R opens his or her mouth about how we need to be compassionate, it sends a message to flood the borders or stick around until the politicians give in. If we have to say mean things and tell them that violating the law and illegally being here under any circumstances will not be tolerated than so be it. After the chaos has subsided and the laws actually enforced (both border and employer aspects) and I don’t see official signs around Southern Arizona saying “Warning, entering high drug and human trafficking area. Be advised” than we can talk about what to do with the ones still here. Until than, no.

    • I for one would be more than happy to round up and deport illegals. I work in LA, so I can tell you that those without a social security number don’t pay income tax, send their kids to school, and get free healthcare from the ER. Illegals also disproportionately use social services, and unlicensed drivers are usually at-fault in traffic collisions. They are also arrested at a higher rate. None of those things are a financial benefit to the parent country. Perhaps the company who employs the laborer gets cheap labor. So people work for cash under the table and don’t get taxed, while others don’t work at all and get my tax money. The Democratic party at large seems to be perfectly happy with undefended borders, whilst simultaneously whittling away at my gun rights. No thanks.

      I’d like all the pro-illegals to explain to me how one individual picking oranges for $10 / hours is worth free healthcare, zero income tax, and multiple children going to school and using other taxpayer services.

  7. Pardon, but name the last time democrats demonstrated flexibility or compromise on…anything? When is it their turn to ‘move to the middle’? “Compromise”, and all that happy horse-sh!t?

    Sorry, that Jedi mind trick doesn’t work anymore. You can keep your left-wing BS.

    • @SD3, Jedi mind trick indeed! I’ve been seeing this more and more. SOP for a Soviet style disinformation campaign.

  8. I have always believed that if we are to be successful in protecting and expanding our gun rights we must reach out to “Non-Shooters” and turn them into “shooters” so that they have a vested interest in defending their own rights. It does not help our cause to alienate “non-shooters” regardless of their political party affiliations.

    That all said… since you lean toward the Democrat Party… can you please explain to me why it is that the Leadership of The Democratic party does not accept that each individual among us has to potential to be a horrible tyrant if given the opportunity and the the Second Amendment was put in place so that the majority of Individuals can keep potential tyrants in check.

    I have always been honest with myself… I firmly believe that I could have outdone even Caligula in Ancient Rome if given the chance.

  9. JD, I wholeheartedly agree. I have voted Democrat most of my life, and I registered as one in California. However, the Democratic Party under Obama has become more uniform in its calls for gun (and citizen) control. I have HOPE that once he’s gone, things will CHANGE, but it’s clear the far-left progressives are drunk on the possibilities Obama opened up, and want more. The reason gun owners are frustrated with Democrats is the moderate ones always cave to the Statists. Perhaps you can evangelize within your circles, but from the outside, all gun owners see is Obama, Holder and Feinstein hating on our rights AND our culture.

    • Good points, however, Hillary, the presumed nominee, has recently announced her support for gun control. Her competition, Biden, is even worse than she is, so I don’t see any improvement for the Dems at that level once the current incompetent is gone.

      • Agreed. Clinton was a liability for the Democrats before, but with the party leaning far to the statist left, she seems to be the favorite daughter now. The question is who will the Republicans put up to challenge her?

        • Accur81, every single one of those candidates would lose against Hillary except maybe Walker. Rand Paul might be able to pull it off by grabbing young libertarians who vote (D). Ben Carson? He may be smart, but his main qualification is the left hates him. Tea Partiers and establishment Repubs better get serious and put forth a candidate that shows wisdom and gets votes, not just says sh!t that fires up the base. Does anyone like Nikki Haley?

  10. I’m a liberal but I’m definitely not a democrat for obvious reasons. Republicans and Democrats are just in cahoots to get cash and keep screwing us over. Republicans will bring out their anti-gay rights issue to distract us from stuff that is really important and the Democrats do the same with gun control. It’s all a bunch of nonsense anyways.

  11. If you believe that Republicans are worthy of undying loyalty you should reconsider your politics.

    If you are conservative, the republican party should offend you on at least one issue. Foreign policy.

    What about SS, medicare, medicaid? Why do people that bash everything slightly progressive as communism vote for politicians that hold SS as untouchable?
    How about legislating morality? Is that conservative? Is that loving liberty? Straight couples get tax, legal, and financial benefits through marriage, but gay couples are second class citizens?

    I consider Republicans to be a slightly less evil option to Democrats.

    • “Straight couples get tax, legal, and financial benefits through marriage, ”

      And single people get stuck with the tab. End the institutionalized discrimination against the single, and the “gay marriage” problem will evaporate.

      There is no clause in the Constitution authorizing the government to meddle in interpersonal relationships or show favoritism and unequal treatment based on what religious ritual one has undergone..

      • You are correct. It’s called “The Marriage Tax” and two-earner married couples have been paying it for generations.

      • >> above what is now a fairly moderate income level

        According to the table you have linked, to, the “fairly moderate” income level is above $148,000 combined family income. I don’t know what definition of “moderate” you are using, but the median household income in US was $51,000 – so half of all American families get less than that.

        Here is the distribution graph of household income for 2010. Add up the columns to the left of $145,000, and compare it to the columns on the right. You can estimate this visually by looking at the area.

        (this isn’t to say that “marriage tax” is not a bad thing – it is – but the vast majority of married Americans do get a tax break when filing jointly)

  12. IMO- Aligning yourself with the Democrat party is equally stupid as aligning yourself with the republicans. At the national level, two major parties exist to present the illusion of choice, and to scratch each others backs. The parties ARE the problem!

  13. Gun owners shouldn’t fear calling out anti-gun pols.

    However, labeling all as good or bad is not a solution.

    I know anti-gun Republicans in Illinois and I know many more pro-gun Democrats in this state.

    Bashing Democrats (or liberals) for the sake of bashing them serves no useful purpose.

    We, as Guns Save Life, welcome gun rights supporters of all ideologies. All races, religions and sexual preferences as well.

    John

    • I agree 100% and would also add: “Gun owners shouldn’t fear calling out anti-gun political parties”

      As soon as the Dems drop it from their party ideology, I will be happy to single out individual anti gun Dem politicians. Until then I will paint them all with the same broad brush. Why? Whether pro gun or not, every Democrat politician signed on the dotted line to their political affiliation and know full well what their party’s stump issues are. Credibility and trust is undermined when you agree with something that you don’t really agree with. Outside of that I don’t usually call individuals out on their political beliefs. Alas, some democrats (individuals) don’t realize the nuance and personalize it anyway.

      I’m not a member of either Democrat or Republican parties so I may not be a good sounding board for this question… is it possible to criticize a political party without criticizing a follower of that party?

  14. The point I want to make is that alienating Democrats and questioning their intelligence is not the way to preserve the RKBA.

    Unfortunately, so long as Nancy Pelosi, Diane Feinstein, and Chuck Schumer remain in positions of influence in the Democratic party, voting (D) isn’t the way to preserve RKBA, either.

    Sorry, but that’s how the system works.

    • I live in IL. None of those people represent me. Why are you painting me with their brush?

      I ask you how alienating the minority democrats who own or could own guns helps the RKBA?
      Seriously, if all you do is make them like you and those affiliated with the RKBA cause less, you are making them less likely to vote in a way that helps the RKBA.

      But, go on, select the second barrel of your shotgun and aim it at your other foot. I won’t stop you.

      • So tell me what 2A supporters your Illinois national Senators are. Or the President that got Ill’s electoral votes. Is that brush OK?

      • If you vote for Democrats for Congress, you’re voting to keep those individuals in power.

  15. The problem isn’t with ‘Democrats’ in general, it’s with the Democratic Party. Of course, is the Democrat voters that continue to return the Democrat politicians to office. The Democrat Party is much more in favor of restrictions on firearms than is the Republican Party. Whether that impacts your votes depends on where on your importance scale you place gun rights, but realize that when you vote for a Democrat candidate, no matter what the candidate’s personal position is on gun rights, you are voting for a person that will, when the legislature (state or federal) is organized will vote for Democrat control. That is not a pro-gun rights vote.

    It may be that you place other issues higher than you place gun rights, and that’s ok, it’s still a more or less free country. But you are placing gun rights lower on your priorities.

    • >> It may be that you place other issues higher than you place gun rights, and that’s ok, it’s still a more or less free country. But you are placing gun rights lower on your priorities.

      Sure, but then a candidate or a party that would offer a solid pro-gun platform without bundling all the other things that many people would consider a no go (generally speaking, it’s social conservative things like anti-abortion or homophobia) would drain those votes from Dems, and make for a larger pro-gun coalition.

      • Interesting that you only think of things that you personally dislike when you talk of things that are a ‘no-go.’ Libertarians as a whole aren’t very good at attracting those on the right either.

        If you put killing fetuses and meaningless changes in marriage laws ahead of gun rights, that’s your privilege, but you should realize that there are people who have the opposite view as well.

          • @RG

            300+ million people with no law, no property rights, etc. Interesting world you want to see. How many people do you think would have to die in order for your utopia to be able to exist?

            • Thanks for putting words in my mouth, bonehead!

              I have always supported private property rights. That is one of the very few legitimate functions of government. Please note, anarchists don’t make wars; bad governments make wars.

              Unlike anybody else’s utopia, zero people “need” to die to be free, assuming everyone who seeks freedom can protect herself from the tyrants.

              I believe in enough government to secure property rights, but it is criminally insane to give the Registrar of Deeds the power to dictate with whom you may have sexual relations.

              • @RG, but you also support slavery. Now…is it any wonder folks are confused by you and your skin Buffalo Bill?

              • @RG

                Logical consequences of your POV

                Anarchists don’t make wars, they’re not organized enough, which also means that they can’t do national defense.

                Anarchists may not do wars, but they do chaos quite well. Riots and the like. You may believe in private property, but it isn’t generally part of the anarchist POV. Rules in general aren’t part of the anarchist POV.

                Are you perhaps an anarchist-lite?

                The world you’ve suggested would not be possible with the population level we currently have.

            • @Scot, please sir…if you and others like you would only accept everyone else’s skin as being a barrier, we skin bearers would have utopia!

          • @RG, so if I use force against someone trying to take my life, I am wrong? I’m supposed to let him into my skin? I thought you said my skin was mine and mine alone?

            • “@RG, so if I use force against someone trying to take my life, I am wrong?”
              No, and don’t bother with the red herrings. But you want to use force to prevent a woman from seeking whatever medical care she wishes. That is an act of aggression against her, which is unacceptable.

              • @RG, but you think its ok to allow her or her murderous “Dr.” Gosnell to use force? Ah…I get it.

        • I’m talking about things that are a no-go from the perspective of a liberal-leaning gun owner. I don’t claim that this is a universal list for people of all political bents.

          If you’re a socially conservative gun owner, then you are already well represented by the Republican party. My point was that there are a bunch of people who are pro-gun, but not really represented in that way politically because 1) they’re not single-issue voters, and 2) the party that is otherwise closer to their preferences on all other issues, including higher-priority ones, is generally in favor of gun control. The obvious way to solve this is to find a place for these voters to express their pro-gun leaning without compromising their stance on other issues – that way you get more pro-gun votes overall.

          • @int19h

            You’d not get more pro-gun votes, because you’d alienate some voters. Your point is that the GOP is a good place for conservative gun owners (in the Russell Kirk sense of conservative). Do you really think that they’d be attracted to a socially liberal pro gun party?

            Not to mention that realistically you’re only going to have two parties, because of the organizing legislatures thing. Even in sane parliamentary systems there really only are two major parties. Once you start dividing parties by the tiniest ideological differences government becomes even more dysfunctional than ours is now. If you were to get a pro-gun, socially liberal party, either it would be too tiny to matter, or the socially liberal anti-gun party would be too tiny to matter.

          • “find a place for these voters to express their pro-gun leaning without compromising their stance on other issues”

            That’s what the Libertarians are here for! Take off your blinders!

        • The notion that a “sane” political system must only have two parties that matter is plainly false. It’s only true in systems with first-past-the-post, winner-take-all electoral systems. More modern ways of counting votes and assigning shares usually give more diverse parliaments, where, yes, you still get two dominant parties, but you also get a bunch of smaller guys who can still make themselves heard by entering into voting agreements with the bigger parties in exchange for supporting some of their platform.

          This does not result in an insane or dysfunctional government – people always bring up Italy as an example of such, but completely ignore the fact that most other European countries (UK excepted) have some form of proportional representation these days, and it works just fine for them. Germany uses mixed member proportional system, for example, and their parliament currently has 3 major parties and 2 minor ones, with no ill effects to the stability or efficiency of the political system.

          The only reason why the two mainstream American parties extol the non-existent virtues of the existing system (by disparging others as “unstable” or “inefficient”) is because they profit immensely from it. So long as they can convince you that it’s lizards either way, you’ll keep voting for the “right” one so that the “wrong” one doesn’t get in, and he can cash in on that.

          • @int19h

            Perhaps I shouldn’t have used ‘sane’ as shorthand for ‘effective.’

            The minor parties in those parliamentary systems that have them along with the ‘sane’ two major parties, tend to force one of the majors into more extreme positions than they otherwise would take when neither of the majors wins a majority, the party with a plurality is forced to make concessions to a minor party in order to form a government. Whether that’s a better system for anyone other than those with fringe minority views is arguable. At least in our system those with minority ideas are forced by the system to attract enough people to their ideas to make a large enough voting bloc within a party, which is why our parties more even today still more coalitions than pure ideological parties.

            I don’t think that touting the fact that the Greens, for example, can force the SPD to the left, or that some similar small party with a small constituency of the right could force a party to the right is something to be proud of. Giving more weight to minority views than they can earn on their own seems to be a way to distort the politics of a nation.

        • But they don’t “get more weight than they own”, unless you imply that 10% of the vote should translate to 0% of input on government policy. They can push the other party in their direction, somewhat, but it is still ultimately limited by the number of seats that they actually control and can offer for a trade – and as a minor coalition partner, they in turn have to support some of the policies of the other side, and usually more of them.

          • @int19h

            Yes, 10% of the vote should translate into 0% of input. I’m not sure where I’d put the threshold, but more than 25% and maybe as high as 33% or 45%

        • So what happened to no taxation without representation? By your logic, if a single party gets, say, 40%, and the remainder of the vote is split between three parties with 20% each, then those parties should get zero say on any issues – even on those on which all three might agree between each other (and disagree with the plurality party). So you’re basically in favor of the minority setting policy contrary to the desires of the majority, so long as that minority can gang up on every single issue.

          • @int18h

            If you’re going to define ‘representation’ by someone having the member of the House from their district, and their Senators (or at least one of them) being of the same party as the voter, I haven’t been ‘represented’ for at least a decade (since 1997). (Congress has the taxing power.)

            The phrase ‘no taxation without representation’ referred to the fact that the Colonies didn’t send any members to Parliament.

            The voters **choose** to split their votes (as some did yesterday in the stupid open primary in CA), no one is denying them the ability to get together and get a candidate past the post. If they believe that the issues that divide them are more important than the issues that they agree on, that’s their choice.

            As the saying goes, ‘politics ain’t beanbag’ and no group is owed representation that they can’t earn.

            If the majority can win elections, they get to set policy. If they can’t win elections, how can you truly say that they’re a majority? Elections are the only polls that count.

            Who chooses electoral districts where you live?

  16. Agreed. One of the big reasons we have hope of protecting the RKBA is that support for the right is bipartisan.

  17. When you help put a Democrat in office you ARE helping the side that wishes to take your guns. Even if that particular Democrat is pro-gun. It’s just a fact and remember “Obama is not coming for your guns.”

  18. Just a reminder… Nixon was a Republican who was against Gun Rights.

    Almost all people in Power don’t want to see their “Underlings” armed.

    That is because Armed Slaves don’t stay Slaves for too long.

  19. I don’t see how one can be a Democrat and hold true to being a supporter of the RKBA… the entire party ideology is against the principles which form the bedrock of our rights and freedoms.

    Granted, the same is also true of Republicans, who tend to be pro-gun, but anti-other freedoms.

    The issue here is that there are few politicians who fight for all our freedoms equally, and we’re forced to vote strategically. Tying our fates to the Republican party is short-sighted, but then again, what alternative do we have?

  20. I just realized some folks on the TTAG community might be older and from a more conservative time in the US,so I’ll break down the modern political reality for the next generation.

    As a 28 year old guy, most of my peers in Urban America don’t even consider the GOP to be an option. When I’ve asked them why, I can’t say I disagree with the reasons. Backwards attitudes on modern social issues like gay marriage, women’s rights, and an equally rampant tendency to say one thing and do something else are very good reasons indeed.The way the young and the minorities see it, if we’re going to get a crooked liar in government either way, we may as well get someone who at least pays lip service to modern social issues.

    I say again-if you , Mr Conservative Gun Owner, don’t make an effort to separate the RKBA from party lines, you will be around to see the day when those same gun rights are repudiated in the highest halls of government .

    Why? Because, like now, we aren’t making an effort to reach out for the Democrats, who are destined to remain a part of our government for the foreseeable future, if not take it over by a decisive majority. Unless we give the future Democrat voters a tangible reason to preserve the 2nd Amendment, they won’t.

    I say this because I honestly think most gun owners don’t have the vision to understand that, and I wish to deprive everyone reading this the right to say no one warned them .

    • As a 30-year old guy, I can understand where you’re coming from; however, my problem is that the Democratic Party will not make an effort to separate the RKBA from party lines. How can I vote for people who will ultimately bow to the party line and rubber stamp every gun control bill that comes along?

      I’ve written my state and federal legislators asking about their positions on gun rights, and I’ve looked at the platforms of candidates for the same positions. In every case, the (D) has meant that, “[they] support the Second Amendment, but…”

      I ask in all seriousness: what do you really think my options are in my voting habits besides: 1) Vote 2A-friendly GOP candidates, or 2) Accept that the people I help vote into office will act exactly opposite how I desire them to act regarding what is possibly my strongest-held issue?

      In the end, I cannot vote according to my many other concerns when the RTKBA is at stake, and I don’t see that as a failing in my voting habits so much as in the campaigning and political habits of the various candidates.

      • I agree. When asking candidates if they support the second amendment. from their replies. I get the feeling that it would be ok to own a musket. or maybe a bolt action rifle for hunting, But never a straight answer.

      • Don’t vote for Democrats. Instead, make Republican party policies on things other than guns sane, so that urban and younger voters can actually vote for them.