The nice thing about Dianne Feinstein’s proposal to ban up to 150 named firearms, hi-cap mags, etc. is that it isn’t going anywhere. Not even in the Democrat-controlled Senate. The Dem’s control it 55 to 45, but there are seven Democrat senators from red states, which Romney won by large margin, who are up for reelection next year. Not only that, but the Senate is controlled by NRA A-rated Harry Reid, who as I have already mentioned, didn’t get his A-rating because his constituents like gun control. He might cave. But it will be painful for him. On a side note, Harry Reid just announced that he is not prepared to get rid of the 60-vote filibuster rule. And then there is the House…
If Feinstein were smart, which she isn’t, she would have come up with a more modest proposal, one that would have been unpalatable for the pro-freedom crowd, but which wouldn’t have raised such a clamor, and would therefore have been more difficult for pro-gun Congressmen to oppose.
The problem for her is that the current hoo-ha is based on the Newtown massacre, where an AR-15 clone was used. So, the logical thing would be to ban AR’s, except that the AR-15 and its clones are now the most popular rifle in America. Therefore, it is hard for Feinstein to divide and conquer.
The other thing is that, since the 90’s, the world has changed. The popularity of gun control is much lower today than in the past. This is largely because of the success of the concealed carry movement, whose principal political side effect was to make a completely new segment of the American populace see firearms as tools for self-defense.
Another thing that changed is that the political class (of the left and right) have a more realistic appreciation of the importance of Second Amendment rights among the voters. For years, Bill Clinton has been counseling Democrats to beware of the gun control issue, that the House takeover of 94 was largely driven by the pro-freedom crowd (OK, he didn’t quite use that terminology). At the time, this fact was unappreciated by even the conservative intelligentsia. In the 90’s, I subscribed to National Review. In their post-mortem to the 94 midterms, they posited many reasons for conservative success. Rarely was gun control mentioned, even though it was a much more important motive force than all the other causes that they did recognized.
I have also been predicting since Obama’s reelection that his second term will fail largely because, in his arrogance, he will overreach. It is now becoming clear that gun control is the issue that will precipitate his downfall.