NRA losing its firepower
Alec MacGillis takes a long look at the battle over gun safety reform and finds NRA is losing its might in the fight. It's a longish read but this is the big takeaway.
The narrow defeat of the background-check bill, it turns out, was not the end of hopes for gun reform, but the beginning.Newtown really did change everything and the the conventional wisdom is outdated. The NRA's power to swing elections is waning.
Senator Chris Murphy, a rookie Connecticut Democrat who has taken a lead on the issue since the Newtown massacre, points out that, of the 16 Senate races the NRA participated in last year, 13 of its candidates lost. “The NRA is just all mythology,” he says. “The NRA does not win elections anymore.”The forces for gun sense are gaining strength. Their resolve was not broken by one legislative defeat, it's hardened into a determined force that will prevail in the end. From Bloomberg's Mayors Against Illegal Guns to Gabby Giffords' group to Moms Demand Action and a growing list of gun safety activists, a coalition is growing larger every day. Their tactics are improving. The NRA's gun absolutists are loud but their numbers are shrinking. The gun sense lobby is determined to prove to the political class that aligning with that minority comes at a greater cost than defying it. We'll all be safer because of their good work.