President Trump has recently signaled being open to more gun regulation legislation, even going so far as to suggesting he’d be open to what is being referred to as an “assault weapons ban,” which makes it illegal for individuals to possess certain weapons that would be deemed by the federal government to be “assault weapons.”
This is not the first time the President has sent such overtures, having endorsed the so-called “No Fly, No Buy” proposal during a Presidential Debate with Dem Nominee Hillary Clinton.
That proposal would have prevented anyone who was on the No Fly list (a list identifying people who are prohibited from flying on planes because they are deemed a potential terrorist threat) from purchasing a firearm.
Still, this recent overture, coupled with his action moving against bump stocks, suggests, to me, that this sudden focus on gun control, a Dem-favorite issue, may be a bid to appease the incoming Democratic House.
Could it be because he fears their new subpoena powers? Or could it simply be Clinton 2.0, where Bill lurched to the right after losing big in 94?
Or could it be some combination of these two factors?
Either way, my bet is this is a calculation on Trump’s part that he will not significantly lose his base, and may yet expand into more leftward territory, shifting his overall coalition just a ‘smidge’ to the left.
What remains to be seen is IF the Senate were to allow a ban on “assault weapons” to pass, what that would do to the overall GOP base going into the 2020 elections.
My prediction: Some form of increased background check regulations will be added. The House will pass an assault weapons ban. The President will support the ban, but not incredibly enthusiastically. The Senate will not pass the ban.
At this point, the Trump base, whoever might have left, might very well return, believing they just witnessed another example of “4D chess.”
Trump can use the tantalizing temptation of an assault weapons ban to at least slow down the Dem House’s efforts to use their newly returned powers to battle Trump’s government with their own government.
The more he can drag this out, the more he can get the media, the politicians to focus on this potential golden prize, the more he can deflect their resources, their efforts away from targeting his personal power and influence.
If the Senate somehow passes this legislation, and Trump signs it, I would wager the chances the GOP will face significant losses in 2020, including the White House, including state races, would be rather high.
What do you think, removing your personal preferences, of the power dynamic at play here with Trump’s recent focus on gun regulation?