Possible Democratic candidates for the 2020 presidential elections started taking their positions on policies like banning assault weapons, as well as putting pressure on their colleagues to go for re-election this year. This movement in the Democratic party gets many lawmakers in a difficult position only months before the November midterm elections.
“This is where the real conflict is,” one top Democratic strategist concluded. “There isn’t really space for an anti-gun candidate in the party and yet there are senators who have a tough balancing act for sure.”
Democratic strategist, Brad Bannon stated that: “The reason for the tension within the party is pretty obvious. Democrats have no choice but to press this issue. With 69 percent in favor of a complete ban, they’re on the right side of public opinion on the issue … For the 2020 Dems, a ban on assault weapons is a no-brainer.”
According to The Hill, no Democrat running for the White House wants to be outflanked from the left on guns. Previously, Hillary Clinton bashed her rival Senator Bernie Sanders for not being strong enough on gun control.
“No one wants to be the lightweight when it comes to guns and particularly an assault weapons ban,” the strategist said. “They all want to be seen as the ones who really rushed to the forefront and pushed this issue when it really mattered.”
Meanwhile, all of the possible 2020 Democratic candidates in Senate, including Elizabeth Warren, Kirsten Gillibrand, Kamala Harris, Cory Booker, Amy Klobuchar and Chris Murphy are all co-sponsors of Senator Dianne Feinstein’s legislation to ban assault weapons. Sanders also voiced his support for banning assault weapons.
“These weapons are not for hunting,” he said. “They’re for killing human beings.”
The Hill reports that the support for the ban on assault weapons has grown among Democrats over the last 11 years. In 2007, 67 Democrats supported a ban. That number continued to grow in 2013 with 83 Democrats co-sponsoring the legislation. The number grew to 149 in 2015 before settling on 167 co-sponsors this year.