Saturday, March 09, 2013

Democratic senators in Alaska, Ark., La., Mont., N.C., S.D. with elections in 2014 wary of gun votes

Six Democratic senators up for election next year in largely rural states "where the Second Amendment is cherished and where Republicans routinely win in presidential elections" are wary of more gun control, The Associated Press reports:  Max Baucus of Montana, Mark Begich of Alaska, Kay Hagan of North Carolina, Tim Johnson of South Dakota, Mary Landrieu of Louisiana and Mark Pryor of Arkansas.

The National Rifle Association “last month launched an advertising campaign aimed squarely at this group, sending a strong message,” AP reports. “It is a very delicate dance for rural state Democrats,” Democratic consultant Barrett Kaiser told AP, which noted, “Both sides are aware that gun owners’ rights are taking shape as a campaign issue that could shift the balance of power in the U.S. Senate. . . . If Republicans pick off these seats they could take the chamber.”

The story focuses on Baucus, noting that he "nearly lost his seat" after voting in the 1990s for background checks for gun buyers and an assault-weapons ban, and though he "would appear to be a shoo-in for re-election . . . one wrong gun vote could energize his opposition." (Read more)

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