Up until recently, it was an issue so toxic that it was not to be touched. In Obama’s first term, he avoided the issue for the most part. Now that he’s won re-election, gun control is a winning issue again:
Democrats see potential Republican opposition to the gun control push led by President Obama as jeopardizing the GOP’s appeal with voters in suburban districts, the very seats Democrats are focusing on in their bid to regain the House majority.
This was the same theory that they touted in 1994. It wasn’t true then, and it certainly isn’t true now. As Glenn Reynolds notes, commenting on this WaPo article, this is a “Self-inflicted wedge issue.”