In terms of the national debate over gun control, Democrats are very much for expanding the regulation of gun ownership and restricting access to guns and ammunition. But when it comes to winning elections Democrats, it seems, are a lot more pliable on the issue.
Case in point, Senator Mark Pryor’s efforts to get re-elected in Arkansas. Per The Arkansas Project, Senator Pryor is running ads explaining his vote on the gun control bill, noting that the legislation wouldn’t have stopped a shooting like the one in Newtown, and the DSCC is backing him up despite attacking Republicans elsewhere for opposing the bill:
Pryor’s ad claims that the gun control bill he recently voted against (Manchin-Toomey) would have done “nothing to prevent tragedies like Newtown, Aurora, Tucson, or even Jonesboro.” Strange, because the DSCC’s spokesman recently told The Hill that “his party’s commitment to expanding background checks for gun sales cannot be doubted.” By touting Pryor’s ad, is the DSCC now saying that their background check efforts would do nothing to prevent tragedies, but they’re fully committed to them anyway? I mean, that’s what I tend to think, but it seems a bit startling to see the DSCC admitting this.
Meanwhile, they’re still gathering petition signatures for background checks and lashing out at Republican supporters of the 2nd Amendment. What a strange world we live in.
This is the sort of thing that happens when a political party cares more about winning elections and accumulating power than winning debates about ideas.
Not that I’m all that upset about the Democrats’ selective pragmatism when it comes to gun rights.