It Won’t Save You

Democrats refusing to vote for Corzine because of his crusade to bring gun rationing to the Garden State. As we’ve been saying for a while, gun control isn’t an issue that can salvage a political career, even in New Jersey. It really is the last refuge of scoundrels.

Hat Tip to Dave Adams

8 thoughts on “It Won’t Save You”

  1. No, but if someone wrote an LTE, there are plenty of others who feel the same way. I think even in New Jersey, pushing gun control probably cost Corzine more votes than it gained him. The problem with New Jersey is that there’s not quite enough of a political constituency for the Second Amendment because there are a) fewer gun owners than other states, and b) because even the GOP has treated gun owners poorly in the past. I think the NJ GOP is aware of b) and wants to start rectifying it, but it’ll take some work and dedication of activists in that state. Most importantly, it’ll take working together, and putting aside difference. That’s something that’s hard to achieve over there.

  2. I agree that the article is overreaching. The gun-rationing scheme wasn’t by any means the key cause of Corzine’s loss, but it _did_ cost him votes. For some people it was the last straw.

    I think Sebastian has it right: the big lesson to take away from this sin’t that NJ voters are joining the 21st century and embracing gun rights, it’s that bashing gun owners is no longer the bottomless well of free political capital that it used to be. We NJ gun owners don’t kill campaigns here, but neither do our enemies carry them anymore. It’s a big step in the right direction, but we’re starting at too big a deficit for it to cause a fundamental change just yet.

  3. What can I say: Obama-change happens overnight in a single election, but meaningful, long term change takes time, patience, and careful consensus-building. We can get the latter, as long as too many folks don’t jump for the former. ;)

  4. And even Obama is likely sacrificing his majority on getting health care reform passed. But you know, depending on Republicans being stupid and pissing away their majority every 15 years, and then running your win full steam as far as it will go, and losing your majority in short order, might not be a bad recipe for the same kind of change over time.

    The Republicans are awful at undoing progressivism, partly because I don’t think they know how to do it.

  5. Fair enough. It may actually follow the same strategy as gun control: there’s no real consensus for it in the US, but if you can exploit the short-term fear generated by traumatic gun-related incidents you can get an accumulation of burdensome restrictions. Today we need to deal with a mass of problem federal gun laws, but as I understand it, those were really only passed in four or five spurts over the last century. The sunsetting AWB is the kind of anomaly that proves what’s essential to the goal: short term support leading to long-term restrictions.

    Is the transformation of the US into a European-style socialist nation meant to follow the same pattern? Throw the moderate Dems under the bus to get one more incremental step that won’t be undone in the next decade of dormancy for the “progressive” movement in Congress? …

    … Y’know, it’s dire enough just thinking about gun issues. Keeping up with the rest of the culture war could get _depressing_. ;)

  6. “The Republicans are awful at undoing progressivism, partly because I don’t think they know how to do it.”

    I’m also unconvinced that they really _want_ to, as a group. Modern Republicans seem to have largely turned their backs on small government, becoming nearly as hyperregulatory as Democrats. If a Bush policy creates more federal power, why would a big-government Obama dismantle it? And if an Obama policy increases federal government power, why would, say, a big-government Romney dismantle it?

    This is why the gun debate’s diverging from the traditional R/D split. We generally do better with leaders who want to leave us alone and let us run our own lives–as time goes by, Republicans and Democrats both fit that description less and less.

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