March 24, 2021

New Day's John Berman boiled things down to the basics on Republican gun inaction.

"So this morning, lawmakers face a choice, it's a choice they have faced before," he said.

"Will they choose to take action, do something, anything, to try to stop these mass shootings or will they choose the status quo? Which means looking at what happened in Boulder this week, in Georgia last week and saying 'I choose this.'

" 'Let's stick with this. Boulder is working for me.' "

Here's what I think. Even with the NRA struggling to survive, even with the tide of public opinion turning so strongly against them, Republicans are now even less likely to support any kind of gun control.

They don't have anything left. They don't have Trump to save them (and he's now a double-edged sword, anyway), they're facing tough reelection fights in 2022 -- and more than that, they're going to face primary challenges from the Qnut wing of their party, this is hopeless.

And this is why Joe Manchin's "bipartisan" schtick is even more absurd than usual, as Rachel Maddow pointed out last night.

So many moving pieces make up this insane political problem that doesn't exist in any other developed country:

This all comes down to the filibuster (because that's what breaks the back of Republican control), the Voting Rights Act (because that's what fixes the voter suppression tactics), and the 2022 election (which allows us to get things done without watering legislation down.)

So if you want things to change, act accordingly. Support your elected officials who want to break the filibuster, and pester the ones who don't. One of the things that drives me crazy is the learned helplessness of Democratic voters who always say, "My congress member/senator is a Republican, so there's no point."

This is absolutely not true. You may think so, but the number of constituent contacts (whether emails, letters, or phone calls) are reported back on every major issue to Kevin McCarthy and Mitch McConnell. It's how they measure public sentiment, and while you won't see the immediate reaction you want, growing opposition does make a difference in their long-term strategies.

If it didn't, why would they track it?

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