Sometimes as a Seattle resident I’m disappointed that my legislators aren’t as full-force liberal as I’d like. But at least I can take comfort in not being represented by Matt Shea, because here’s what he’s telling his constituents.
Democrats aren’t stopping the assault against our freedom with tax increases. They also want every law abiding citizen who owns a gun to have a background check…. Initiative 594 would require background checks whenever a firearm is sold or transferred between licensed dealers or private parties, with few exceptions. Any sale or transfer of a firearm must be completed through a dealer. If you gave a firearm to your son, a brother or other family member, the proposed law would require them to have a background check or be in violation. It would criminalize law-abiding citizens people, such as Gonzaga University students Erik Fagan and Dan McIntosh, who used a gun last year to scare off a six-time convicted felon when he tried to break into their on-campus house for money.
Christ what an asshole. Hank at Shallow Cognitions takes care of most of the making fun of this. The fact that this was supposedly a bad bill of the week, but is an initiative, the fact that the initiative doesn’t apply to gifts to family (although, I’ll say don’t give a gun to your felon family members if you have any), the fact that the initiative doesn’t have fuck all to do with university rules about firearms. He also has a link to Matt Shea’s road rage incident, that somehow I hadn’t heard about.
That’s all correct, and worth talking about. But I’m curious about the politics? This is an incredibly popular idea. Background checks should be a no-brainer. They’re also super popular. I mean I get that in an off, off year recall in Colorado this can have some resonance. But as an initiative that will almost certainly go to the people and will probably pass, what the fuck? Does he realize he has to be on the same ballot as the thing a supermajority of gun owners support?
Even if you’re trying to just get favor from the gun lobby, this seems like a poor idea politically. I mean, speak at their rallies and answer questions, I suppose. But to announce it to constituents who almost certainly are majority on the other side seems unhelpful. It seems like even if he isn’t worried about reelection (he got 56% last time in a GOP year, but I don’t know about the quality of his opponent or the district more generally), it would make him less trustworthy.