Heidi Heitkamp Isn’t Against Gun Control

heidiheitkamp

Senator Heidi Heitkamp has been getting a lot of attention from pro-gun folks because she called the President’s gun control proposals “extreme.” My contention, though, based on Heitkamp’s comments in context is that she’s just posturing. She’s not against gun control. She’s just against being perceived as anti-gun.

As proof, there’s this response from Heitkamp’s office to criticism I wrote about earlier today from an anti-gun group:

Senator Heitkamp believes the discussion and ultimate solution to these mass violence tragedies must go beyond a singular focus on gun laws, and that the discussion must examine mental health, school security, and community development to help parents identify and address children potentially suffering from mental illness. Senator Heitkamp has clearly stated that all options must be on the table when it comes to addressing gun violence in America.

Heitkamp is saying that the solution to “mass violence” (which, remember, is declining) isn’t just gun control. It’s gun control, plus a lot of other stuff.

I think we can all count on Heitkamp being a reliable vote for gun control for Democrats, limited only to the degree Heitkamp doesn’t want to be perceived as anti-gun by her North Dakota constituency. Meaning Heitkamp will be a lot more anti-gun here at the beginning of her 6-year term than in, say, four or five years when voters are more likely to remember her actions.

Rob Port is the editor of SayAnythingBlog.com. In 2011 he was a finalist for the Watch Dog of the Year from the Sam Adams Alliance and winner of the Americans For Prosperity Award for Online Excellence. In 2013 the Washington Post named SAB one of the nation's top state-based political blogs, and named Rob one of the state's best political reporters. He writes a weekly column for several North Dakota newspapers, and also serves as a policy fellow for the North Dakota Policy Council.

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