U.S.A. –-(Ammoland.com)- CNN reported that a so-called “gun safety group aligned with former New York Mayor, and failed presidential candidate, Michael Bloomberg” is targeting 13 “battleground states” in an effort to register 100,000 young voters to help determine which party controls the White House and the U.S. Senate in January.
The 13 identified states are Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Wisconsin, according to the CNN report.
This comes as a reminder that Sen. Bernie Sanders may have quit the race for the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination, but as reported by CBS News he made it clear with his withdrawal announcement, “While this campaign is coming to an end, our movement is not.” Sanders appealed to millions of younger voters with talk of free college tuition and many other things, resulting in a not-so-flattering nickname for his devoted followers: the “Free S—t Army” or “FSA.” That bloc of voters has helped push the Democrats farther to the left, and Sanders indicated he still hopes to be an influence in shaping the party’s platform when they convene in August. The gathering was delayed a month—originally slated in July—because of the COVID-19 pandemic panic.
According to CNN, the group Students Demand Action will conduct a “virtual organizing program” to accomplish the voter registration drive. It replaces the originally-planned in-person campaign that was derailed by the coronavirus outbreak. The group will reportedly spend $1.5 million on the revised effort, which is essentially pocket change for Bloomberg, though there is no evidence so far he is personally bankrolling the effort.
The Pew Research Center reported last year that members of “Generation Z” –younger voters born in the late 1990s to whom Sanders’ message seemed to appeal—“are projected to make up about 10% of this year’s eligible voters.” That is no small figure, and it is a signal to older, and frequently lethargic, gun owners that they need to vote in November.
Here’s what Pew Research said in an analysis of the 2018 election:
“Together, Gen Z and Millennials reported casting 30.6 million votes, a quarter of the total. Gen Z was responsible for 4.5 million, or 4%, of all votes. This post-Millennial generation is just starting to reach voting age, and their impact will likely be felt more in the 2020 presidential election, when they are projected to be 10% of eligible voters.”
This voter registration drive could be a threat to gun owners to ignore at their own peril. The Bloomberg-supported Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund has already pledged to spend $60 million to influence the 2020 election by helping elect gun control candidates. If anti-gunners gain control of Capitol Hill and the White House, it will mean an end to President Donald Trump’s quiet but effective effort to fill federal court vacancies with conservative, pro-rights judges and Supreme Court justices. It could also mean a Congress hostile to Second Amendment issues.
The importance of that cannot be over-stated. Currently, there are several federal lawsuits making their way through the federal court system, not to mention the legal actions taken over the past three weeks relating to shutdowns of gun stores by gubernatorial edict in several states where governors decided gun stores are “non-essential” despite a non-binding Department of Homeland Security opinion to the contrary.
The legal effort, involving such groups as the Second Amendment Foundation, Firearms Policy Coalition, and National Rifle Association, working together on at least a couple of lawsuits, was disdained by Everytown President John Feinblatt, writing an Op-Ed at CNN. He asserted that the Trump administration “caved” to gun rights groups by saying gun shop operations are “essential” businesses during the ongoing pandemic.
“It is both shameful and nonsensical for the federal government to deem gun stores essential, a special privilege that millions of other shuttered small businesses can only dream about,” Feinblatt wrote.
Gun owners won’t succumb to such rhetoric, but many others do.
CNN quoted Kristen Clarke, president and executive director of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, who noted, “Presidential election years are the moment when we see the greatest numbers of people moving onto the registration rolls.”
This raises the question for grassroots Second Amendment activists and organizations: What are you doing to register voters, and turn them out in November? “Nothing” would be the wrong answer.
About Dave Workman