With the move by the President to ban bump stocks, we can understand a lot more about the aggregate mood of the coalition he has built.
The coalition itself is comprised, in part, of so-called blue-belt Democrats, the Union-type Democrats, less driven by a progressive, all-encompassing socio-cultural ideology and more driven by a desire to get paid decently and be able to provide a good quality of life for themselves and their families.
This pivotal group in the looming 2020 Presidential war does not, it seems to me, identify “gun rights” as one of their key issues.
The size of the gun issue group (people who identify ‘gun rights’ as a core issue) is significant, but not overwhelmingly so.
While Trump supporters are overwhelmingly in favor of more, as opposed to less, ‘gun rights,’ the percentage of what might be called ‘no compromise’ gun rights supporters, I would wager, is not significant enough to cause the President to feel as if he s risking doing significant damage to his coalition.
After all, where will the ‘no compromise’ gun rights people go? Trump and the GOP are the only show in town for gun rights issues folks.
I would add that the NRA would not be categorized as a No Compromiser by my standards, so the reaction of the NRA is not nearly as significant as, say, the Gun Owners of America, which seems to take a less compromising (significantly so) stance than does the NRA.
To gauge the mood, and maybe even the overall health of the Trump coalition, pay close attention first and foremost to the ‘no compromise’ gun rights supporters of Trump.
Should they, in a significant majority expression, offer up protective cover to Trump (“we’re not for this, but we understand we have to throw the mob some bones to prevent them from doing something far worse”), then the mood is closer to ‘desperate’ within the Trump coalition.
If the No Compromisers are willing to give Trump a ‘pass’ on banning bump stocks, using regulations and/or Presidential orders, then it means, to me, they believe they are facing such a significant, existential threat from the Democrats that they are willing to yield, even on this point, even understanding that, when it comes to gun regulation, the track record indicates the effort to expand gun regulation is never-ending.
If the No Compromisers are, in an overwhelmingly majority expression, convicted to move through all “legal” channels to undo the ban, WHILE still supporting Trump (and perhaps claiming something on the line of “He’s dead wrong on this, but he’s so right about everything else that we support him, even though we oppose this action and are working to undo it”) then they do not feel a significant existential threat from the Democrats.
If the No Compromisers are, in an overwhelmingly majority expression, convicted to not only move to undo the President’s actions, but also move to no longer support the President, then their mood is beyond desperate, it anticipates civil war.
I do not believe this faction, the Trump-supporting No Compromisers, is significant enough to tip off a civil war, but I do believe that should this faction choose to reject Trump, that the voting poll strength of the Democrats will increase significantly leading up to 2020.