Democrats plan to control 2nd Amnd. voters

Discussion in 'The Powder Keg' started by Windwalker, May 3, 2008.

  1. Windwalker

    Windwalker G&G Newbie

    The Third Way Culture Project
    Taking Back The Second Amendment
    Seven Steps Progressives Must Take To Close The Gun Gap
    A Third Way Message Memo by Jim Kessler, Vice President for Policy
    Overview: The Gun Gap
    Gun owners believe that progressives are anti-gun, anti-Second Amendment, and do
    not respect the values of gun owners; however there is a significant opportunity for
    progressives to gain gun owner support with a moderate message that voices support
    for Second Amendment rights, calls for the closure of loopholes in our gun laws, and
    demands vigorous enforcement of the existing laws on the books. In a generic ballot,
    this formulation improved Democratic performance by a net of 29 points.
    Progressives suffer from a major voting gap with gun owners in both congressional
    and presidential elections. For example, in the 2004 presidential elections, there was a
    41-point gap in John Kerry’s performance between gun owners and non-gun owners (44
    points for Gore). And the gap was similar – 37 points – for congressional Democrats in
    2004 (36 points in 2000). It is no accident that the states that voted for President Bush
    have the highest gun ownership rates (53% of red state voters had a gun in the home,
    compared to 39% of blue state voters). Moreover, 54% of union members live in a home
    with a gun.
    However, while it is true that gun owners tend to be more conservative than nongun
    owners, they are not as conservative as their voting behavior would suggest. For
    example, 52% of gun owners call themselves pro-life compared to 42% of non-gun
    The Issue: Years of mishandling the gun issue have cost progressives the
    support of many Americans who would otherwise be on their
    The Message: I take a back seat to no one in support of Second Amendment
    rights, but those rights do not extend to terrorists and criminals.
    The Policy: Supporting Second Amendment rights, closing gun law
    loopholes that terrorists and criminals can exploit, fixing the
    broken background check system, and reversing the Bush gun
    crime policy by vigorously enforcing the major federal gun laws
    on the books.
    January 2006 Taking Back The Second Amendment
    Third Way Message Memo 2
    owners — a fairly slim margin. 79% of gun owners support prayer in school, compared
    to 73% of non-gun owners. 51% of gun owners attend religious services daily or weekly,
    compared to 49% of non-gun owners. And 54% of gun owners describe their political
    views as liberal or moderate, compared to 62% of non-gun owners. This means one of
    the reasons that gun owners tend to vote for conservative candidates is the gun issue
    Among progressives, the conventional wisdom about how to close this gap is for the
    party to avoid the gun issue altogether except in urban and liberal areas. But our
    extensive research shows that gun owners have such strong preconceptions about
    where progressives stand on guns that silence spells certain defeat for progressives in
    so-called “red states” – states that voted for President Bush in 2004 and, not
    coincidentally, have gun ownership rates more than 35% higher than states that went
    for Gore or Kerry.
    January 2006 Taking Back The Second Amendment
    Third Way Message Memo 3
    A Seven Step Primer To Take Back The Second
    Amendment and Win The Gun Vote
    Progressives can close this gun gap and make significant inroads with gun owners by
    staking out an aggressive position on guns that reflects both the majority view of gun
    owners and non-gun owners, and responsible policy positions to keep America safe.
    This moderate view supports the Second Amendment, new laws like those designed
    to close the gun show loophole, and the strenuous enforcement of existing gun laws. If
    progressives want to close the gun gap, they need to jettison their existing strategy of
    silence and embrace these seven steps to improve their performance.
    Step 1: Reject the Conventional Wisdom on Guns
    Conventional wisdom instructs progressives to avoid the gun issue altogether, in the
    hope that presidential and congressional candidates will be able to get gun owners to
    focus on other bread and butter issues – like jobs, health care and education – instead of
    voting their gun. This strategy is based on a deeply flawed premise – that if a progressive
    is silent on guns, gun owners will assume that they are pro-gun or be unsure about
    where the progressive stands on the issue and simply ignore the issue when going into
    the voting booth.
    Our polling shows that voters come to the polls with already ingrained perceptions
    about where the parties stand on guns. Voters, particularly gun-owning voters, perceive
    of progressives as anti-gun and anti-gun owner.
    • When asked which party wants to ban guns, by a margin of 63-20% gun owners
    say Democrats (55-18% for non-gun owners).
    • When asked which party supports the Second Amendment right to bear arms, by
    a margin of 66-15% gun owners say Republicans (54-15% for non-gun owners).
    • When asked which party does not respect gun owners and their values, by a
    margin of 59-20% gun owners say Democrats (44-19% for non-gun owners).
    • When asked which party blames law-abiding gun owners for the crime problem,
    by a margin of 55-19% gun owners say Democrats (39-25% for non-gun owners).
    Taken together this means that the leading strategy employed by progressives to
    win gun owner votes – namely avoiding the gun issue entirely – is doomed to fail. Voters
    have already made up their mind where progressives stand on guns, and until
    progressives redefine the issue in a way that appeals to gun owning voters, they will be
    perceived as anti-gun.
    Step 2: Own the Second Amendment
    Progressives need to be aware of the near-universal support for, and interpretation
    of, the Second Amendment among all voters. Only 8% of voters believe that the Second
    January 2006 Taking Back The Second Amendment
    Third Way Message Memo 4
    Amendment does not protect an individual’s right to own a gun — a position many gunowning
    voters feel belongs to progressives. 74% take a moderate view of the
    amendment and believe that the right allows for restrictions that keep guns out of the
    hands of criminals. 14% are absolutists and believe that the right allows for no
    restrictions whatsoever.
    Voters overwhelmingly support the Second Amendment and believe that it confers
    an individual’s right to own firearms. Yet, dangerously for progressives – nearly twothirds
    of gun owners and three-fifths of non-gun owners said that the Democrats are the
    party that wants to restrict gun rights.
    Progressives have to take back the Second Amendment – ending all equivocation on
    the meaning of the Second Amendment by inserting strong support for the individual
    rights interpretation in all gun discussions. They must define the right in a way that
    makes sense to the vast majority of voters – as a right that comes with responsibilities for
    individual owners and for society to support tough enforcement and closing existing
    gun law loopholes. And they must preface all of their policy pronouncements with
    genuine support for the Second Amendment.
    Consider the strong support among gun owners for the following messages from a
    Democratic candidate:
    “I take a back seat to no one in support of Second Amendment rights, but I also support
    requiring criminal background checks at gun shows and continuing the ban on assault
    (Supported by 83% of gun owners)
    “Americans have a right to own a gun to protect themselves and their families.”
    (Supported by 93% of gun owners)
    “Our gun rights come with the responsibility to keep them out of the hands of criminals,
    terrorists and children.”
    (Supported by 85% of gun owners)
    Step 3: Redefine the Issue from Gun Control to Gun Safety
    Gun control has become a loaded term that leads voters to believe that the
    candidate supports the most restrictive laws, including a ban on handguns. Voters don’t
    define enforcement of existing gun laws or closing the gun show loophole as gun
    control — neither should candidates.
    “By a margin of 70-20% (77-13% among gun owners), voters prefer a Democratic
    candidate who supports gun safety over a candidate who supports gun control.”
    January 2006 Taking Back The Second Amendment
    Third Way Message Memo 5
    Step 4: Criticize Conservatives for Failing to Enforce Existing
    Gun Laws
    Conservatives are very vulnerable to the powerful enforcement issue, because under
    George Bush and the Republican controlled Congress:
    • Twenty of the twenty-two major federal gun laws are enforced so infrequently
    they might as well not exist.
    • This administration is more likely to audit a typical taxpayer than prosecute a
    criminal who illegally attempts to purchase a gun.
    • Roughly 2% of all federal gun crimes are ever prosecuted.
    Progressives can win a major victory with gun owners and have a significant impact
    on reducing gun violence by seizing the initiative on enforcement, demanding vigorous
    enforcement of existing laws, and chastising the President for breaking his promise to
    enforce the gun laws on the books.
    “Only 578 out of the 136,000 people who lied on the criminal background check form
    that is required to buy a gun were prosecuted. We need to get serious and crack down
    on people who try to buy guns illegally.” (Supported by 88% of gun owners).
    Step 5: Promote Centrist Gun Policies with Centrist Language
    The problem that progressives have on the gun issue has far less to do with the
    typical policies they espouse than the rhetoric they employ.
    • By a margin of 92-7%, voters support improving the background check system to
    make instant checks faster and more accurate (90-9% among gun owners).
    • By a margin of 90-9%, voters support closing the gun show loophole (85-13%
    among gun owners, and 83-16% among those who have attended gun shows!).
    • By a margin of 77-21%, voters support renewing the assault weapons ban (66-
    32% among gun owners).
    Moreover, for every one of these proposed laws, voters overwhelmingly believe
    that a progressive can support each measure and still be a strong supporter of the
    Second Amendment. When asked on each of these proposals whether a Democrat
    could support it and “still be a strong supporter of the Second Amendment right to own
    a gun,” the number saying yes to each measure is as follows:
    • Improving the background check system (83% all, 89% gun owners)
    • Closing gun show loophole (82% all, 80% gun owners)
    • Renewing assault weapons ban (71% all, 67% gun owners)
    If a candidate or officeholder intends to support gun safety laws like closing the gun
    show loophole or renewing the assault weapons ban, it is critical to couple that support
    with support for the Second Amendment and for enforcing the laws on the books.
    January 2006 Taking Back The Second Amendment
    Third Way Message Memo 6
    Finally, don’t be shy to marry your positions to those of prominent conservatives who
    gun owners trust with their rights.
    “My position on gun shows and the assault weapons ban is the same as George Bush
    and John McCain.”
    Step 6: Take Your Message Directly to Gun Owners – Don’t Let
    Your Opponent Define You
    The best way for candidates to connect to voters on guns is to talk to them
    repeatedly. Candidates should respect and appeal to local gun values, and – for those
    candidates who are compelled to support progressive gun safety laws -- have the
    confidence that local gun owners mostly do want to close the gun show loophole and
    renew the assault weapons ban.
    It’s critical that progressives recognize that only an aggressive outreach strategy to
    gun owners will ensure that your opponent’s message about your gun record does not
    define your candidacy. Gun owners are not a monolithic voting block – and they will
    only vote their gun if they believe that the progressive is out to take away their gun
    rights, a long-perpetuated myth about national Democrats.
    Progressives are underperforming among gun owners because they have been
    defined by others on guns. Whether it is talking about personal experiences with
    firearms and hunting, explicitly talking about the gun issue, or forming a Sportsmen for
    Candidate Jones committee – gun owners are a voting block that can be persuaded to
    vote for progressives.
    “I will bring our local gun values to Washington. That means respecting the right to
    own a gun and making sure our gun laws do not leave loopholes open that help
    criminals, terrorists, or illegal aliens get guns.” (Supported by 86% of gun owners).
    “I am pro-hunter because I believe in preserving the environment to protect fish and
    wildlife. Every day, America loses 365 acres of pristine land to development. We have to
    preserve these lands, or hunting will cease to exist in America.” (Supported by 78% of
    gun owners)
    Step 7: Implement Your Gun Plan and Watch the Gun Votes Roll In
    Gun owners are ready to support progressive candidates that support sensible gun
    safety laws, vigorous enforcement, and Second Amendment rights. That is because a
    plurality of gun owners define themselves as moderate and would be receptive to
    supporting a progressive if that candidate was moderate on the gun issue.
    Gun owners define this moderate position on guns using three yardsticks:
    • Support for the Second Amendment
    • Closing Gun Law Loopholes
    • Vigorously Enforcing the Gun Laws on the Books
    January 2006 Taking Back The Second Amendment
    Third Way Message Memo 7
    In a generic ballot, 42% said they would vote for a Democrat versus 45% for a
    Republican who supports Second Amendment gun rights (30-56% among gun owners).
    When the Democrat is defined as one “who supports Second Amendment gun
    rights, closing some gun law loopholes, and enforcing the laws on the books,” support
    for the Democrat increased to 57-32% over the same Republican (44-48% among gun
    owners). Even the support from non-gun owners increased from 52% to 68%.
    When support for closing gun law loopholes is taken out of the equation, and the
    Democrat is defined as one “who supports Second Amendment gun rights and
    enforcing the laws on the books,” support for the Democrat drops to 46-38% among all
    voters and even drops significantly for gun owners to 36-53%.
    In fact, the Democrat who supports gun rights, closing gun law loopholes, and
    vigorous enforcement of existing laws outperforms any other Democrat against
    the generic Republican among gun owners, non-gun owners, southerners,
    Midwesterners, Farm Staters, Westerners, Northeasterners, independents, liberals,
    moderates, and conservatives.
    For more information about the gun issue, please contact Jim Kessler ([email protected]
  2. LiveToShoot

    LiveToShoot Guest

    Insightful info...thanks WW.

    "CAUTION: Slippery When Wet" is what comes to mind when I read the Dems/progressives new approach on 2nd Amendment.

  3. I have to agree with LiveTo Shoot, until and if a "progressive" shows by his/her record and not just with rhetoric that he/she does literally support the 2d amendment according to the Constitution's intent as stated again and again by this country's founding fathers they will play hell getting me to vote for them "actions speak louder than words."
  4. Cyrille your words best describe what I would post...A.H
  5. Mooseman684

    Mooseman684 G&G Newbie

    Thats all a Bunch of BS !!!
    There is No GUN SHOW LOOPHOLE.
    AND 67% of gun owners DO NOT support an Assault weapon Ban...

    83% do not support Mandatory Background checks and assault weapon Bans.

    :cussing:He Can kiss My Progressive:censored:
  6. Windwalker

    Windwalker G&G Newbie

    I agree Rich but Kessler cares not for the truth, he is just getting paid to help the Dem. politicians win. Keep repeating something enough times and some people will believe it.
  7. The basic problem with the Democratic Party and "Progressives" is that too many of the idiots really are anti-gun. It's hard to make the voting public's perceptions go away when they're based on the facts...:)

    I think part of the solution is to get more pro-gun, pro-hunting, pro-2nd Amendment voters back into the Democratic Party, where they were fifty years ago when the parties hadn't polarized and still had centers. The more gun owners we have registered as Democrats, the more it'll dilute the power of the anti-gun extremists in the party.

    It isn't really good for the country to have one party appealing to the hard-core right wing, the other appealing to the hard-core left wing, and no one even talking to the main body in between except during the few months political campaigns last.
  8. TXplt

    TXplt Gun Toting Boeing Driver Forum Contributor

    I think this is completely true Mooseman, but remember alot of the answer they crunch later depends on how the pollster phrases the question -- I was polled by a health group a while back and they asked "do you favor equal access for all American's to health care." I think all of us would answer this question "yes." The question the guy (after hearing where his questions were going.....) was really asking was "should government (i.e. me) pay for someone else's heath care," to which I would have responded "in most cases no.

    The good thing is most firearms owners are against gun control, against BS, and against stuff that doesn't work. When pollsters/stragegists come up with these convenient and trite phrases and answers, most of us can see right through them. We expect those we'd vote for to answer:

    I'm against gun control because it violates our constiution and doesn't work.

    Every American has an inherent right of self defense. Period.

    We have thousands of laws on the books. One more isn't going to help. Let's just get out of the way of citizens trying to protect themselves.

    Thanks, Windwalker as well ! -- good words.

    The Dems do have to get away from the nanny state stuff and the anti-gun stuff if they want to get someone electable, in my book.

    It's kind of scary that strategists and pollsters tell people how to phrase things. I'd rather speak for myself, and I'd rather vote for someone who speaks for himself/herself. I don't need someone to tell me where I stand on an issue.
    Last edited: May 4, 2008
  9. Who are we voting for anyway?
  10. TXplt

    TXplt Gun Toting Boeing Driver Forum Contributor

    The funny thing about Gun Control is that a great deal of its roots are based on racist fanaticism. The Dred Scott decision was made because the Supreme Court feared (rightly) that affirming that a slave had rights could result in slaves exercising those rights under the 2A, arming themselves and becoming a threat to their captors. Concealed weapons laws flourished post civil war, the intent being (by prohibiting or using a "may issue" permit system) to prevent newly freed slaves from being able to legally carry firearms, thus fostering racial discrimination and power. Same as on the west coast, but between minorities and business owners/employers/politicians. As strikes progressed through the country, this philosophy was used so that unionized workers would have more trouble arming themselves against the companies and strikebreakers. A class system so that elites could be armed, but not the common man or workers.

    For a party (the Dems) who is supposed to represent minorities and the working man, gun control is the last thing they should be advocating. But they are, and are shooting themselves in the foot.