Gun restrictions passed by Virginia Democrats, who hold legislative majorities, have dominated national headlines early in 2020. New gun restrictions have prompted many counties to pass Second Amendment Sanctuary Ordinances (SASOs) and ponder leaving the state for West Virginia. The backlash against these laws will be something to watch all year, however – and Virginia is not alone. If Virginia is any guide, GOP candidates at the state level all over America will be able to ride the wave of resistance to these assaults on the constitutional right to bear arms.
This is Part One of an examination of the effect that assaults on gun rights will have on electoral politics at the state level. This column will take a look at attempts by Virginia Democrats to implement gun control. Part Two will look at the Second Amendment issue in various other states.
ABC News reports:
Virginia’s Democrat-led state government is set to enact the toughest package of new gun laws in a generation this month. The backlash, in one of the nation’s most pro-gun states, could impact the 2020 election.
A January rally in Richmond made national news when tens of thousands of concerned citizens showed up to peacefully protest the potential restrictions on their rights. Heated talk about the possibility of civil war followed. That energy has yet to dissipate. Indeed, it seems to be building into a movement with a goal: to elect legislators who will not trample individual rights. Per the ABC News article,
“The phrase ‘awoken the sleeping giant’ is probably the best way to describe the Second Amendment group now,” said Mitchell Tyler, co-owner of SafeSide Tactical, a family-run gun shop in Roanoke, Virginia.
Tyler says sales of weapons are up “dramatically” over the last three months; the shop has signed up hundreds of concerned customers for town hall meetings on the new restrictions and sanctuary protections.
Gun rights advocates say the legislation, made possible by Democrats’ takeover of the Virginia statehouse late last year for the first time in more than two decades, is certain to shakeup the 2020 campaign.
“Gun owners are a threat to politicians at the ballot box. That is where we’re most dangerous,” Tyler said. “Because of this groundswell in sanctuary cities and counties, I think you’ll see Virginia go red this year in the presidential election.”
Virginia is the most prominent example, but far from the only one. Just a few states in which backlash against gun control legislation could change elections this year include Connecticut, Colorado, Arizona, Oregon, New Hampshire, and New Jersey. Meanwhile, lawmakers in Georgia and Michigan have considered legislation expanding gun rights. With Mike Bloomberg out of the presidential race, we could see him wasting even more of his money on failed attempts to buy new laws at the state level. Gun rights advocates are gearing up to defeat Moms Demand Action, Everytown for Gun Safety, and other such national organizations trying to change state gun laws.
Democrats at the state level all over America should think long and hard about how their overreach on Second Amendment issues will affect their reelection campaigns.
Part Two of this series will take a look at those states and the backlash caused by overreach from the gun control crowd.
Jeff Reynolds is the author of the book, “Behind the Curtain: Inside the Network of Progressive Billionaires and Their Campaign to Undermine Democracy,” available now at www.WhoOwnsTheDems.com. Jeff hosts a podcast at anchor.fm/BehindTheCurtain. You can follow him on Twitter @ChargerJeff.