During the November 6 airing of Morning Edition, NPR national political correspondent Don Gonyea surveyed the post-election makeup of state legislatures across the country and said the midterms left Democrats in their “worst position since something called the Civil War.” In so doing, he specifically cited the opportunity Republicans now have to “roll back” firearm laws in state after state.
According to Gonyea, although there are “some recounts and some close [races] still going,” it appears Republicans “picked up between 350 and 375 [state legislative] seats around the country” on November 4. In addition to these gains, Republicans also picked up governorships, although they “were expected to lose some ground” in that area because “they were defending so much turf” to begin with.
Instead of losing ground, they actually “picked up three more [gubernatorial wins].”
Gonyea said these huge gains mean there are now “23 states… [in which] the Republicans control governorship, the senate and the house or assembly.” In other words, Republicans “control everything” in nearly half the states, which provides an opportunity to “get things done.”
Gonyea singled out “firearm laws” as one of the things Republicans can change as soon they assume office. In addition to rolling back gun control, these changes could include expanding protections on the exercise of Second Amendment rights. We’ve already seen this with Governor-elect Greg Abbott (R) in Texas, who emerged within hours from his November 4 victory to announce that he will sign an Open Carry handgun bill as soon as the Texas house and senate put one on his desk.
It should be noted that the IJReview shows that Republicans have “supermajority status” in 8 of the states under their control, which means they can pursue reductions in gun control and greater protections for Second Amendment rights without the prospect of Democrat interference.
Pending recounts and the continuing first counts of some midterm races, Democrats only control 6 to 7 states total.
Follow AWR Hawkins Twitter @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.