5/99 Why Gun Control Loses at the Polls
(June 16, 1999)
Gun Owners of America
8001 Forbes Place, Suite 102, Springfield, VA 22151
Phone: 703-321-8585 / FAX: 703-321-8408
On May 20 of this year, one month after the Littleton shooting, the headlines of Colorado’s second largest paper blared: “Gun-control opinions unchanged.”
This new poll showed that a full 65 percent of Coloradans FAVOR allowing decent citizens to carry concealed firearms. This was barely down from the 66 percent figure that was taken in February — a difference well within the margin of error. [The poll was conducted by the Denver Rocky Mountain News and a local Denver news station.]
A recent Zogby poll (Feb. 15–17) showed that 60 percent of all Americans support the right of law-abiding citizens to carry a firearm on their person.
No ‘Public Mood’ Shift. What do these polls have to say about the current gun control debate in Congress? Quite a bit, actually. There has been no so-called public ‘mood shift.’ Such a notion is merely a figment of the media’s imagination.
In May, The Washington Times reported that Presidential candidate, Elizabeth Dole, lost ground in the polls as a result of her recent remarks in favor of gun control:
An April 29–May 3 poll of Republican voters found Mrs. Dole had lost ground to Mr. Bush. The poll was completed a day after her May 2 endorsement of mandatory trigger locks and the ban on assault-style weapons that many gun-rights advocates want Congress to repeal. [The Washington Times, May 17, 1999.]
Clinton laments losing the Congress as a result of the GUN VOTE. Even President Clinton reminded the nation just recently how Democratic support for gun control cost his party dearly. At an April 27 White House press conference, Clinton stated that,
There are some [Congressmen] who would be on this platform today who lost their seats in 1994 because they voted for the Brady Bill and they voted for the assault weapons ban.
Indeed, right after the 1994 election, Clinton stated that such gun control “cost 20 members their seats” and the “control” of the Congress.
The real test: gun control loses at the polls. Even a stopped clock is right twice a day. And the President is right about this — gun control has failed miserably at the polls. Consider the following:
* In 1994, the GOP swept the Congressional elections for the first time in a generation — a victory primarily due to gun control support by Democrats (see Clinton statements above).
* Also in 1994, Milwaukee voters trounced a city-wide gun ban. The initiative lost 68-32%.
* Washington voters shot down a trigger locks initiative by a whopping 71-29% margin in ’97. In 1998, Wisconsin voters passed a Right to Keep and Bear Arms Constitutional Amendment by a 76-24% margin.
Please vote “NO” on final passaae of H.R. 2122. GOA will rate this vote.