A Sunday news report from NBC may send some uncomfortable shivers up the backs of perennial gun control proponents, because the news agency revealed that millennials – the group on which Democrats have focused to help carry the November election – are not as sold on gun control as one might expect.
According to NBC, an October 2015 Gallup poll found less support for stricter gun laws among those aged 18-29 years than in older age groups. The highest percentage (57%) supporting new gun laws are those in the 30-49 year age bracket. But among the younger set, only half support tougher gun laws.
A recent ABC News/Refinery 29 poll also cited by the story said millennial women think gun rights are important second only to economic inequality and retiring their student loans. Women think gun rights are as important as abortion rights and equal pay.
How does all of this shake out? Democrats cannot take the women’s vote for granted, even though their candidate is Hillary Rodham Clinton. And with the weekend’s revelations about Democratic National Committee emails allegedly showing bias for Clinton against Bernie Sanders, and thousands of protesters taking to the streets of Philadelphia this week, the “party of gun control” just might have a lot of female no-shows at the ballot box in November.
The scandal erupted Sunday with the announcement that DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz would not have a speaking role, and then her resignation from the chairmanship followed. She will reportedly step down as soon as the convention is finished, but she then becomes Clinton’s “honorary” chairman for a 50-state effort to boost Democrat candidates. She will also reportedly serve as a Clinton “surrogate” nationwide.
Clinton has made gun control a centerpiece of her campaign. Her choice of running mates, Virginia’s Tim Kaine, gets low grades consistently from gun rights organizations.
And CNN reported Monday morning that Republican nominee Donald Trump has now grabbed a significant lead over Clinton, 44 percent to 39 percent, in a four-way poll that also included Libertarian Gary Johnson (9%) and Jill Stein (3%). This could change by the end of the week, but CNN admitted that this “represents a 6-point convention bounce for Trump, which are traditionally measured in two-way matchups.”