A new Washington Post-ABC News poll suggests that “the renewed gun control debate is a wild card in the midterm elections” this fall, with 42 percent of voters saying that it is “extremely important” that political candidates share their views regarding guns, according to the newspaper.
Another revelation that should surprise nobody is that three-fourths of the voters who support new gun legislation will vote for Democrats for the dozens of Congressional seats up for grabs. However, 80 percent of the people who are strong on gun rights support Republicans.
Of course, six months remain before the midterms and that can be an eternity in politics. A new Rasmussen survey shows President Donald Trump’s popularity at 51 percent, while 48 percent of likely voters do not approve of his job performance. That popularity could have political coattails if enough voters want to assure that Trump’s policies are not dismantled in 2019 by a Democrat majority.
Gun control versus gun rights has been a critical issue since the Feb. 14 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida. That incident took the lives of 14 students and three adults, and was the catalyst for a massive nationwide gun control push with the “March For Our Lives” in late March.
Overall, according to the Washington Post, “More than 4 in 10 registered voters say it is extremely important that candidates share their views on gun issues.”
Over the weekend, gun rights activists held rallies across the country, but where thousands of gun control supporters marched last month, only hundreds were reported showing up for gatherings at or near state capitol buildings Saturday.
The Salem Statesman-Journal reported about 300 activists showed up at the Oregon World War II Memorial near the State Capitol in Salem. The newspaper noted by contrast that “More than 3,000 people attended the Salem event on March 24,” the date of the “March For Our Lives” gun control demonstrations.
Olympia saw about 200 Washington gun owners on the state capitol steps in a steady rain that dampened everybody, but not their spirits. However, last month a much larger crowd marched for gun control in Seattle, the state’s liberal Democrat stronghold.
NPR and the Associated Press reported “about 100 people at the event in Cheyenne, Wyo., more than 400 at the event in Dover, Del. and more than 135 people at the event in Atlanta, Ga. Approximately 200 people showed up in Kalispell, Montana according to the Missoulian newspaper. The Raleigh, N.C. News & Observer reported that “Several hundred people gathered on Halifax Mall in downtown Raleigh for a pro-Second Amendment rally…”
Organizers of the event in Augusta, Maine told the AP about 800 people showed up there.”
The Boston Globe reported that, “About 75 supporters of the Second Amendment gathered on the steps of the Massachusetts State House Saturday in a show of solidarity less than a month after thousands marched in Boston and other cities to push for stricter gun laws.”
In Richmond, Va., about 200 gun owners gathered at the event. Down in Texas, according to The Daily Beast, “a couple hundred pro-gun activists gathered outside the Texas Capitol Building in Austin.”
Another rally is scheduled in Washington State this coming Saturday, from noon to 3 p.m., also on the capitol steps in Olympia. Liberty Park Press learned from a capitol employee that a much larger turnout is anticipated for this event.