Kirsten Gillibrand and the gun issue:

In today's National Review Online, I suggest that it would be politically self-defeating for Sen. Gillibrand to reverse her position on Second Amendment issues.

As my article explains, in 1996 incumbent Republican Representative Daniel Frisa faced a challenge from Carolyn McCarthy, and so he did an about-face on gun issues, while claiming that he had been consistent all along. Thus, "Voters could see that McCarthy had a sincere and consistent position on gun control, while Frisa changed his position based on transparent political calculation. Frisa's flip-flop undoubtedly made voters wonder which of his other supposed convictions he would abandon when it became politically useful. McCarthy crushed him in the general election by 58 to 41 percent."

Gillibrand's strong support for the Second Amendment is likely an advantage in the general election, and a flip-flop would doom her in the primary.