Why Don’t We Make The 2016 Election A National Plebiscite On Guns?

So Hillary’s beginning to look around for a VP and, not without good reason, the names of some other women have come into view, the most prominent of course being Liz Warren. I say ‘of course’ because this trial balloon is probably being floated by the folks who want to make sure that Bernie’s most ardent supporters don’t bolt and run during the Fall election.  Like where are they going to go?  To Ralph Nader?

hillary            Anyway, I think with all due respect to the gender warriors (said positively, btw) that what Hillary really needs to do is forget about balancing her ticket by using the traditional methodologies like geography, class, so on and so forth, and instead think about issues, in particular the one issue which gave her campaign a real boost, namely, the issue of guns.  Because you may recall that when Hillary raised the gun issue in no uncertain terms, the media (as well as her campaign) described the move as an attempt to exploit a chink in Bernie’s alleged left-wing view of things, but I saw it as something else.

And what I saw it as was the very first response by any Democrat to what had been, and continues to be an endless barrage of “I Love The 2nd Amendment” crap from Trump and the other Republican presidential phonies all the way down the line. This nonsense started the day after two television journalists were killed in Virginia on August 26, 2015 when the Shlump said that it “wasn’t a gun problem” and went on to support the notion that armed civilians made Americans safe from crime.  He then began working the most strident calls for 2nd Amendment ‘rights’ into all his KKK rallies and issued a white paper extolling the virtues of law-abiding gun owners, whereupon all the other Republican presidential weasels followed suit. Remember when Marco Rubio picked up a free gun at Ruger?

Hillary’s decision to go big-time on the gun issue started in the aftermath of the Umpqua shooting on October 1, 2015. And she took it right to the Republicans the very next day in a Florida speech when she said “we need to build a movement” to counter the strength of the NRA.  She made it clear that she was going to attack Republicans on this issue, and she has continued to push a strong GVP agenda ever since.  To quote from her website: “comprehensive background checks, cracking down on illegal gun traffickers, holding dealers and manufacturers accountable when they endanger Americans, and keeping guns out of the hands of domestic abusers and stalkers.” Not a bad list.

And not only is it a good list, but all those issues happen to be supported by an overwhelming majority of Americans, support which cuts across all demographic lines and includes gun owners as well. It also turns out, incidentally, that in all surveys that ask people whether they feel safer with a gun, women consistently score higher than men in believing that gun access puts people at risk.  Women also score higher than men on wanting more gun regulations, with the most recent Pew poll showing 57% of women expressing the need for more gun regulations, as opposed to only 37% of males.

So here we have a significant gender difference on the issue which most clearly differentiates Hillary from the ‘presumptive’ Republican nominee, and one which I believe could be best exploited by bringing to the Democratic ticket another woman whose experience, crowd appeal and media savvy would dramatically overwhelm any Trump-ish attempt to further exploit NRA-engendered fears about the loss of 2nd-Amendment ‘rights.’  Because the truth is that what I want to see is a national plebiscite that will really test, once and for all, the alleged American love affair with guns.  So I got an idea. We need a woman who can drive home the GVP message.  I haven’t discussed this with her, but why don’t we draft Shannon Watts?

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