April 23, 2013

Nate Silver discerns that Democrats won't be able to take advantage of the gun-control vote in the 2014 elections.

Lots of analysis. Bottom line:
[P]olls showing 90 percent support for background checks will tend to overstate how well the Democrats’ position might play out before the electorate in practice, though public opinion was on their side on this vote.

Moreover, few of the Republican senators who are up for re-election in 2014 are vulnerable for any reason.... In fact, the safety of the Senate Republicans may have enabled them to vote against the amendment, at least in part, for a tactical reason: to protect their colleagues in the House. This is not to suggest that Republicans are likely to lose the House — but there are 17 House Republicans in districts carried by President Obama last year. By preventing the background-check bill from securing the 60 votes necessary to pass the Senate, the Republicans may have prevented their House counterparts from having to take a tough vote....

56 comments:

Jim Gust said...

Instapundit scooped Silver on this reasoning last week.

edutcher said...

He figured that one out all by his lonesome?

Wow, I'm impressed!!

mccullough said...

The economy, unemployment, and the disastrous implementation of Obamacare will be the issues.

None of these favor Democrats. The only thing favoring Democrats in the Senate is the propensity of the GOP to nominate douchebags.

Nonapod said...

So The Great Seer has determined that it is possible to hold different viewpoints on background checks, clip sizes, and assault weapons.

Seeing Red said...

Even in the deep blue Peoples' Republic of IL, gun control got voted down.

For those who don't know, IL lost big on concealed carry, they've been fighting it for a very long time.

So Magigan tried to Rahm thru a bill that said IL "may" issued CC permits.

Basically, they & their connected cronies would get the permits, we citizen vermin wouldn't be able to.

The downstate dems voted with the few remaining pubbies to hand Madigan a rare defeat.

OTOH, the downstaters did stop Rahm from foisting Chicago's pension costs on the rest of the state.

Ann Althouse said...

But did Instapundit have those graphs? Hmm?

Ann Althouse said...

Can one "scoop" about the future?

mccullough said...

I'm still waiting for the Patriots- Seahawks Superbowl that Nate predicted.

dreams said...

I don't like Nate Silver but he did have Louisville with the best percentage chance to win the NCAA tournament and he was correct.

machine said...

...and that's all that really matters isn't it...

ndspinelli said...

Does he do horse races? The Derby is next week.

Jay said...

P]olls showing 90 percent support for background checks

There are no "polls"

There was 1 poll.

Jay said...

The emotional attachment to "background checks at gun shows!" is silly and absurd.

Especially since gun shows have nothing to do with any high profile or mass killing.

This is bizarre to watch

AprilApple said...

I bought my guns at a gun show and had to go through a back-ground check and a wait time.


This was before our CO dem-ruled state legislature creamed us with stupid and emotional magazine restrictions.

dreams said...

The same people calling for background checks are the same people who prevent those with mental illness or violent behavior from being added to the background data list because of their privacy rights.

ampersand said...

The Republicans are doing their all time best to shore up Democrat
prospects. Both with Enzi(r)Wyoming, introducing internet sales taxes and the gang of 8 immigration clown car driven by
McCain (r) Atlzheimer.

n.n said...

The problem with gun control, as with similar measures, is that it does not address the causes of, nor would it prevent, the incidents it purports to resolve.

Perhaps people are better capable of recognizing ulterior motives than the politicians and JournoLists will give them credit for.

While treating symptoms is politically, economically, and socially profitable, perhaps the people are growing intolerant of these actors' juvenile behavior.

Original Mike said...

"[P]olls showing 90 percent support for background checks..."

Anybody know the wording of that poll?

furious_a said...

Shaming doesn't usually work for those who have none themselves.

furious_a said...
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furious_a said...

...the Republicans may have prevented their House counterparts from having to take a tough vote....

...which was the White House plan all along -- dump the bill on the House, force the Republican to vote it down, and use that vote as a club in 2014 to flip the House. It was never intended to be signed into law, just passed by the Senate. That's why Obama was so visibily steam-from-his-jug-ears angry.

*Every* "no" vote in the Senate, not just the Republican ones, was the 40+st vote against.

Alex said...

Silver taketh as much as he giveth.

Alex said...

did someone say "jug ears"? Racist!

n.n said...

We already have background checks for everyone but domestic and foreign criminals. How would a measure designed to proscribe the behavior of law-abiding members of society prevent criminals from committing acts of involuntary exploitation? How would it prevent anyone from purchasing the guns sold by the federal government to arm a criminal cartel?

Also, as the purported impetus for this renewed interest in progressive control of law-abiding members of society is to protect children, how is it that they will not address the principal cause of childhood mortality?

Since they are not addressing the causes of the incident justifying their action, nor are they addressing the resolution they hope to achieve, it can only be determined that they have an ulterior motive.

Broomhandle said...

"but there are 17 House Republicans in districts carried by President Obama"

But also carried by the same 17 House Republicans. Really, how stupid can you get.

Broomhandle said...
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Birches said...

+1 Broomhandle

It appears that Mr Silver doesn't realize that voters split the ticket in a Presidential Election year.

The chances that those reps would face a more liberal demographic in an off year? Miniscule.

Silver is just living in the East Coast bubble.

AprilApple said...

btw- When you purchase a gun at a gun show - you don't leave with a gun.

(At least I didn't)

Lucien said...

It wouldn't surprise me if 90% of the public supported normalized relations with Cuba (I am one of them), but we don't care about it very much, while the people who oppose it care a whole lot about the issue (and a lot of them live in a swing state). Representative government often works that way -- intenisty of feeling about an issue can sometimes overcome numbers.

Alex said...

Lucien - that's an important point you make. What is the intensity coefficient among different voting pools?

Michael said...

This 90% is a silly number and should not be repeated seriously. Do 90% of people continue to like vanilla ice cream after the detail of the liver pate cone?

Michael said...

This 90% is a silly number and should not be repeated seriously. Do 90% of people continue to like vanilla ice cream after the detail of the liver pate cone?

Drago said...

Broomhandle: "But also carried by the same 17 House Republicans. Really, how stupid can you get"

I think it's a bigger deal when a republican carries a house district that was won by Obama than the converse with democrats/Rep President.

If at least 50%+1 in a district voted for Obama, it almost defies reason that a republican won the house seat given the thought processes evidenced by most Obama voters.

Of course, Romney only barely outperformed McCain's totals nationwide in an election where Obama lost 6 Million votes from 2008, so that probably tells us much more about the Presidential vote totals.

chickelit said...

Bottom line: Schadenfreude

Drago said...

Lucien: " Representative government often works that way -- intenisty of feeling about an issue can sometimes overcome numbers."

Precisely.

It works the same way in a conflict.

I can't quite remember who said it or the exact quote but the gist of it goes something like a nations power is equal to it's population + it's industrial base multiplied by it's resolve (or intensity) or something like that.

Hmmm, that quote is really eluding me now.

Very irritating. I probably won't be able to sleep until I figure it out.

Big Mike said...

The "90%" always was bogus, and the senators who voted against Manchin-Toomey understood that.

Jay said...

Original Mike said...

Anybody know the wording of that poll?


Yes. Here is what they are hanging their hat on:

Do you support or oppose requiring background checks for all gun buyers?

Link to PDF

ad hoc said...

I believe that if you purchase a gun from licensed dealer, they do a background check, even if you purchase the gun at a gun show.

If you purchase a gun from a private citizen, they are not required to do a background check.

I must admit I'm not sure what the proposed law would do exactly about background checks. Not allow private sales? (It's a fairly small percentage of sales) Did it address sales to someone being treated for mental illness?

This is one of those things that may sound good - there should be background checks before people purchase guns - but it's already being done, in most cases, so it's not really a serious proposal. Maybe enough people figured that out.

While this is anecdotal, I was at a shooting range abut a month ago and almost half of the lanes were a man and a woman (the man was coaching/practicing with his wife or girlfriend).

Jay said...

By the way, that poll is utter garbage.

MarkD said...

The uninformed and uninvolved will believe anything. The President said it. It must be true. Who told you that? The President. Apologies to State Farm, but that's where we're at in this "debate."

Nobody's asking the President why giving thousands of guns to the drug cartels is OK. Do twenty Americans count more than three hundred Mexicans? How would background checks have prevented Lanza from stealing the weapons he used? They wouldn't, but look, background checks. From a guy who has released damn little of his background no less.

Meanwhile, in NY, we see exactly what will happen. Some guy was prescribed a drug used to treat depression once, a decade ago, and somehow, magically, his supposedly private medical records were used to seize his licensed guns. Trust us, they say. Watch what they do, I say.

So, I'm not at all surprised that nobody trust the liar in the White House. not even his disappointed allies.

I'll just send my check to the NRA and watch the show.

Fred Drinkwater said...

Drago writes: If at least 50%+1 in a district voted for Obama, it almost defies reason that a republican won the house seat given the thought processes evidenced by most Obama voters.

Actually I can easily see the reasoning, IF most of those republicans were incumbents. After all, voting for the incumbent is often voting for 1) seniority i.e. power, and 2) your own "bring home the bacon" guy.

Both of those would seem to fit with the stereotypical Obama voter.

Fred Drinkwater said...

And before I get jumped on, I think it's clear that the voters' and reps' party is nearly irrelevant to the two aspects I mentioned.

AprilApple said...
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Aaron said...

Instapundit had the right idea...any background check law should add some provisos that anyone who created or used "gun registry" based on that data get jail time.

Wouldn't that be a compromise the Democrats could live with?

Gene said...

I can't understand the people (including Obama) complaining about the failure of the senate to approve gun control. Proponents of gun control claim that 90% of Americans want new restrictions on guns and then they turn around and accuse the senators who voted no on gun control of just trying to save their asses.

Well, which is it? If 90% of Americans want gun control, then the way to save your senate seat is to vote for it, not against it. What am I missing here?

Jay said...

Gene,

stop talking common sense and put an Obama pin on your lapel like every good patriot does.

Thanks!

Michael K said...

"The emotional attachment to "background checks at gun shows!" is silly and absurd.

Especially since gun shows have nothing to do with any high profile or mass killing.

This is bizarre to watch"

It's also a lie. The only gun ales that don't require them are in the parking lot outside.

Bruce Hayden said...

I believe that if you purchase a gun from licensed dealer, they do a background check, even if you purchase the gun at a gun show.

If you purchase a gun from a private citizen, they are not required to do a background check.


All accurate, except to point out that there is a limit over which sales require the seller to be licensed. Thus, while you can make a living selling a lot of things over the Internet, guns are really not one of them, because the number of guns required to do so would turn you into a vendor, require an FFL, and therefore background checks.

One of the corollaries is that the "gun show loophole" is very narrow, since apparently most of guns sold at most gun shows are by those in the business of selling guns under federal law, and, thus, need FFLs to do so and, therefore, are required to perform background checks.

A couple of more things. First, handguns cannot be sold, I think, to someone in another state. The way that I think this works is that if you are buying a handgun, you must buy it either from an FFL holder or in the state that you live in. And, you can't buy guns through the mail, etc. Rather, my memory is that they have to be delivered to a FFL in your state, where you go through the background check to pick them up. Also, there are already federal laws prohibiting "straw purchases". Which means that the girl friends of gang bangers who buy them their guns are already committing federal felonies. Of course, as we found out with Fast and Furious, the ATF often doesn't prosecute this sort of crime...

Which gets us to the defeated legislation. It would have required a background check for gun show sales (fairly rare that don't already require such) and most private sales or transfers(often to family and friends). So, you would need such to sell a gun to your next door neighborhood of many years. That sort of thing. Apparently, they did exempt transfers within the close family, or something like that.

Meanwhile, while the new law would have primarily required a background check of private sales and transfers to known individuals, the law would have also loosened up the limits on collection of gun ownership information by the federal government. Only the AG (and thus the Department of Justice) would apparently be prohibited from accumulating gun registry information, which would have been trivially easy to circumvent - i.e. have the ATF or FBI send it to a Homeland Security database. Different department doing the accumulation would have probably been sufficient. And, it didn't hurt that two states had made their CCW data available to the feds right around then (MO and NY).

Bruce Hayden said...

The poll that the gun grabbers are bragging about most likely was specifically designed to give a desired result by ignoring significant adverse information. I would suggest that it would have had significantly different results if it had been prefaced with a statement that the proposed background checks would not have prevented any recent mass killings, that few guns are sold without background checks at gun shows, and it mostly would have affected private sales and transfers to individuals already known to the seller or transferor. Oh, and that almost all guns used by criminals are already acquired illegally, either on the black market, where they were either stolen or smuggled, or through straw purchasers, which is already a federal felony. Then see the results of the poll.

Jay said...

First, handguns cannot be sold, I think, to someone in another state

This is true of all firearms.

Also:
18 U.S.C. § 922 : US Code:

(b) It shall be unlawful for any licensed importer, licensed
manufacturer, licensed dealer, or licensed collector to sell or
deliver

(2) any firearm to any person in any State where the purchase
or possession by such person of such firearm would be in
violation of any State law or any published ordinance applicable
at the place of sale, delivery or other disposition
, unless the
licensee knows or has reasonable cause to believe that the
purchase or possession would not be in violation of such State
law or such published ordinance;

n.n said...

Gene:

That's an astute observation. The political representative will favor the democratic majority. This suggest that the cited "polls" do not reflect an actual reality, other then a preferred outcome by the reporter.

n.n said...
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n.n said...

Bruce Hayden:

And in the case of the Sandy Hook massacre, the perpetrator illegally obtained the guns after murdering the legal owner, his mother.

I haven't read the bill, but since that event is cited as an impetus to further restrict the rights of law-abiding members of society, I would assume that the measures recorded would at least address that circumstance. If they do not, then I must infer that there are unstated ulterior motives.

jr565 said...

the ONLY thing the dems are even partially right on are background checks. If they just stuck with that they'd probably get it passed.
Only they had to go for the huge all encompassing legislation that does oohing but alienate half the population, at least.
They're going to lose the senate over this, if we're lucky.

Sofa King said...

A fundamental disconnect is that Democrats view and attempted to justify the legislation in isolation, as a singular reasonable thing. Those on the opposite side tended to view the legislation as a step in a continuous process, as one more link in a chain.

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