In anti-Republican deluge, Second Amendment just gets a little damp:

In an article this morning for National Review Online, I analyze how the Second Amendment fared in last night's election. Results: Almost no net change in Senate seats (-1) or governorships (-1.5). In the House, a loss of 14 seats — less than half the size of the 32-seat Republican loss. The incoming freshman classes in the U.S. House and Senate include a plentiful supply of pro-gun Democrats, a very important positive long-term trend.

That said, Speaker Pelosi and Judiciary Chair Conyers will make it nearly impossible to pass constructive legislation on the Second Amendment issues, except perhaps as appropriations riders.

Perhaps the starkest difference between the Republican results and the Second Amendment results were in Ohio. There, pro-gun Democrats picked up two formerly Republican open seats in the House. Three endangered pro-gun Republican Congresspersons defeated anti-gun Democratic challengers. Anti-gun retiring Republican Governor Bob Taft was replaced by strongly pro-gun Democrat Ted Strickland, while anti-gun Republican Attorney General Betty Montgomery was defeated by pro-gun Democrat Mark Dann. The Buckeye Firearms Association reports that in the Ohio House, "the pro-gun majority is firmly in place", and the state Senate has improved significantly. Prospects look good for progressive legislation in Ohio, starting with statewide preemption of local gun bans.

I'll be talking about the election results on the NRA News radio program tonight.

ONE MORE THING: Today's Atlanta Journal-Constitution includes an op-ed I wrote on the dangers of mandatory gun lock laws.

So, what was the advantage of having pro-gun Republicans in the Congressional majority, anyway? Except for protecting gunmakers from frivolous lawsuits (which can be seen as pro-business rather than pro-gun), I don't remember much action: nothing about doing away with DC's anti-gun laws, nothing about a national carry law for CW license holders, no federal action against NOLA pols for their gun confiscation....

Well, the Democrats will probably be worse but that's not much of a recommendation for the 'pubbies.
11.8.2006 2:08pm
Daniel Chapman (mail):
Out of curiosity, did the NRA endorse Strickland? I can't find it anywhere on their webpage.

[They gave both Strickland and Blackwell an A, without endorsing one over the other. The grades are at]
11.8.2006 2:46pm
Mark12 (mail):
Why do you use the term "Second Amendment" when the more accurate and less controversial term "pro-gun" is available?

[That the Second Amendment guarantees individual gun rights is "controversial" only to people who are uninformed, or who are invincibly ignorant. I do use "pro-gun" a lot in my writing. But that word is controversial too. Some gun control advocates (even the Brady Campaign!) have claimed that they are pro-gun. Occassionally, the advocates are telling the truth; LA Times publisher Otis Chandler was a very serious hunter, who also wanted to ban handguns. He probably considered himself "pro-gun."]
11.8.2006 5:26pm
Kent Daughtrey:
I, for one, am not so sure that Ohio's new governor is as pro-gun as Mr. Kopel. He may not be "anti-gun", but he has been quoted as being lukewarm to the 2nd amendment establishment. I am loathe to use the word "ruse", but I think we will have to wait and see whether the governor really has any clothes or not.
11.8.2006 6:24pm
corkie the dog:
"Pro-gun Republican incumbents who repelled anti-gun challenges included Schwarzenegger (Calif.)"

You listed California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger as a pro-gun governor who successfully defended against an anti-gun opponent. Yet, Schwarzenegger banned 50-cal rifles, and has come out in favor of other types of gun restrictions. His wife is also famously anti-gun. Are you sure he belongs in the pro-gun column?

[In a California context, certainly. He's vetoed a lot of bad bills. California gun laws would be much worse if Gray Davis had not been recalled.]
11.8.2006 8:16pm
Porlok-------I think Congress passed a law that forbids any entity that receives federal funding from confiscating firearms during a emergency ie what happened in NO. The House has passed a law repealing draconian DC laws ie. handgun ban. The Senate has sat on it. The House has passed I think or are wanting to pass a bill to REFORM the BATFE after what they did at VA gun shows. Congress has acted and the NICS info on legal buyers is destroyed in 24 hours. They passed a law keeping greedy anti-second amedment lawyers and mayors and AG fingers off trace data. The silly so called Assault Weapon ban and magazine ban is gone to the trash heap of History where it better stay.And that does not even cover the bad bills such and ole man Lautenberg from NJ trying to close gun stores and ban the sell of firarms tied to the terror threat level and other nonsense from seeing the light of day. That is a few things that were done. Maybe the AG will sue or charge Bloomberg before it is over for illegal acts.
11.9.2006 1:02am
Syd (mail):
Eh, David, there are other things at issue in this country besides the second amendment. There are another nine in the Bill of Rights. Don't those matter a little?
11.9.2006 1:16am
Daniel Chapman (mail):
No one EVER complains about Mr. Carpenter's single-issue focus...

[And that's good. The VC isn't a general circulation newspaper. It's a bunch of academics who write about what interests them, and particularly about topics for which they have some expertise. Dale is well-suited to provide election analysis on gay rights issues, as I am for gun rights issues. I don't think either of us claimed that our particular favorite subjects were the only important issues.]
11.9.2006 8:15am
Daniel Chapman (mail):
I hope that didn't come across like I was encouraging people to start making similar complaints against Mr. Carpenter... I was just noting that the "single issue" gripe is always aimed at you or Mr. Bernstein. It's not really the lack of variety that bothers Syd.
11.9.2006 1:49pm
Yankev (mail):
Kent, I don't know much about Strickland, but Ohio's new Lt. Gov. Lee Fisher is rabidly anti-gun. He is a former Ohio Attorney General and ran unsuccessfully for governor in 1994, if I remember correctly. I also seem to remember that the NRA endorsed his opponent in that race.

There has been speculation that Strickland is a potential VP candidate for 2008. If he resigns to run, we will be stuck with Fisher as our governor. Not a pretty prospect.
11.9.2006 8:24pm