The AP notes that red-state Democrats are looking at the Obama Administration’s gun-grabbing orgy, and nervously casting an eye to the ’14 election.
They start with Montana Democrat Max Baucus:
Back during the Clinton era, [Baucus] faced a choice: support an assault weapons ban urged by a president from his own party and risk angering constituents who cherish their gun rights, or buck his party. He chose the ban, and nearly lost his Senate seat.
This was in ’94. The media downplays this, giving all credit for the GOP’s electoral turnaround to Gingrich and the “Contract With America”. And as much credit as Gingrich deserves, the gun issue, in the wake of the noxious gun grabbing provisions in the ’94 “Crime Bill” contributed a big chunk to the GOP’s electoral victory.
That was then. This is Montana:
Now, as he begins his campaign for a seventh term, Baucus faces the question again. For weeks, gun foes have sought assurances he would oppose the assault weapons ban. But it was only this past week he said he would oppose it.
That decision alone doesn’t settle the issue for his re-election campaign. His opponents are watching closely, eager to pounce as he navigates a series of other gun control proposals, including an expected call for universal background checks.
Baucus’ predicament is one that a group of Democrats like him in the West and South are facing. They hail from predominantly rural regions of the country where the Second Amendment is cherished and where Republicans routinely win in presidential elections.
This, of course, was part of the story of 1994, nationally.
It was also part of the story in Minnesota in 2002; DFLers in greater Minnesota who followed the gun-grabbing line of the Metrocrat orcs got swept out of office en masse.
Which is one reason so many House DFLers signed on to the Hilstrom bill last week – to deny the GOP a cudgel…
…that too many Republicans take for granted.
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