On May 24, Politico Magazine ran a piece reminding current Democratic office holders of Bill Clinton’s warning that pro-gun control polling is not pro-gun control voting.
In other words, polls may show support for gun control but that does not mean the respondents to a particular poll are motivated to vote because of the issue. However, NRA members and other Second Amendment supporters are motivated and will vote to protect their rights.
According to Politico Magazine, it was just weeks after the Sandy Hook attack when Clinton stepped in to warn rabid gun control Democrats that they could not trust polls showing support for gun control. He said, “All these polls that you see saying the public is for us on all these issues — they are meaningless if they’re not voting issues.”
Clinton focused on rural Americans, saying, “A lot of these people … all they’ve got is their hunting and their fishing. Or they’re living in a place where they don’t have much police presence. Or they’ve been listening to this stuff for so long that they believe it all.”
Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) did not listen. Instead, he continued his bold gun control push until the bill went down in flames on April 17, 2013. Senators Mark Udall (D-CO), Kay Hagan (D-NC), and Mary Landrieu (D-LA) did not listen either. Instead, they voted for Manchin’s gun control and were voted out of office by their red state constituents during the 2014 midterm elections.
Of course, Hillary Clinton did not listen. She seized on pro-gun control polling and ran a presidential campaign that was openly anti-gun, clearly anti-Second Amendment, and purposefully pro-gun control. Throughout her campaign, Democratic surrogates like Gabby Giffords, Mark Kelly, and Shannon Watts continued to claim the American people wanted more gun control, but it turns out the American people voted another way.
Again, Bill Clinton warned, “All these polls that you see saying the public is for us on all these issues — they are meaningless if they’re not voting issues.”
So what now? Politico Magazine wonders if Democrats have come to a place where they are willing to jettison gun control in order to win back Congress. But the American people are savvy and would certainly wonder if such a move would be part of a larger Democratic plan to talk pro-gun until winning office, then vote pro-gun control.
AWR Hawkins is the Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and host of “Bullets with AWR Hawkins,” a Breitbart News podcast. He is also the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.