Joe over at Joe’s Crabby Shack is pondering whether it’s worth accepting the commission in order to get rid of the permit to purchase requirement.
I don’t know all the ins and outs of politics in Nebraska, but it’s a deal I’d be willing to accept in Pennsylvania.Â It’s ideal to be able to outright crush everything, but that’s now always how things will go.Â Politics is not a rational or neat process.Â This is pure speculation on my part that this is how it went down in Nebraska, but a general outline of how it goes:
- Gun control legislator sponsors and introduces gun control bill
- Various interest groups position on the bill, and mobilize their respective constituencies.
- Politicians respond to that pressure, as said sponsor runs around trying to get support for their bill.Â Sponsor realizes he can’t get support thanks to pressure from a certain gun rights group.
- Sponsor begins amending bill in hopes of finding support.Â Â (Sponsor won’t give up because he has to please his constituents, and avoid losing prestige.)
- More support will invariably come on board as bill is altered to placate certain interests.Â When support levels of said gun control bill begin to get close to having a chance at passage, the end of gun rights groups political power is nearing.
- At this point lobbyists of gun rights groups have a choice.Â Remain opposed and run the risk that a bad, albeit watered down bill will pass over their objections.Â Or offer sponsor to add something constituents of gun rights groups want in exchange for dropping opposition to the bill.
Obviously NRA took the latter option here. Was it the best option to take?Â That depends on what’s important to you.Â Obviously NRA can’t conduct a membership poll in the middle of a big political battle, so they have to do their best based on what they know from interacting with members.Â But if you boil down what happened here, a very very bad gun banning bill got turned into something that was largely neutral, and got rid of at least one prior restraint on the right to bear arms.
When they tired a semi-automatic ban in Pennsylvania, a similar thing happened.Â It’s very rare in the political process to have to make absolutely no concessions, which is why the founding fathers chose to place the right to bear arms outside of it (only in theory thanks to the courts).Â The trick is giving up symbolism and gaining substance.Â If Cornhusker State gun owners keep turning out performances like they did with this bill, I don’t think they have much to fear from this commission.