Signs of NRA’s Grip Weakening As Lawmakers Talk Gun Control
There are the Carolyn McCarthys of Congress, the legislators most likely to enthusiastically take up President Obama's call to find ways to prevent another mass shooting, politics be damned. But there are signs that others on the Hill and beyond are getting past any timidness to talk gun control now too.
There's Sen. Joe Manchin -- you know, that West Virginia Democrat with a campaign ad featuring him shooting the cap and trade bill with a gun. Today he called for an assault weapons ban while on MSNBC. Manchin has an A-rating from the National Rifle Association.
Rep. John Yarmuth, a Democrat from Kentucky, put out a statement today, apologizing for being "largely silent" on gun violence and saying he wants to be a part of Obama's call for "meaningful action."
"Many of my colleagues are afraid that their support of efforts to reduce gun violence will bring the wrath of the NRA down on them," Yarmuth writes. "I believe it is more rational to fear guns far more than the illusory political power of the NRA."
Then this afternoon, Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., said on a local CBS affiliate that lawmakers need to take up "rational gun control."
“I believe every American has Second Amendment rights, the ability to hunt is part of our culture. I’ve had a NRA rating of an 'A' but, you know, enough is enough,” Warner, a former governor, said.
Off the Hill, former Mitt Romney advisor Mark DeMoss said he's breaking ranks with the GOP on gun control and MSNBC's Joe Scarborough, a former Republican lawmaker, opened his show today calling for lawmakers to pass stricter gun control measures.