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Dear Republican Senator:
The gun control advocates have now made their intentions perfectly clear.
Having demanded that gun control come to the Senate floor, they are unwilling to accept the judgment of the Senate. Rather, like spoiled playground brats, they intend to keep the game going and going and going — until they are ahead. Then the game ends.
In the meantime, they will use every tool at their command to batter Republicans mercilessly. MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough pretty much summarized their approach when, on Wednesday, he accused you of supporting “criminals and terrorists and rapists.”
Obama said “They deserve a vote.” And you gave it to them.
But it turns out that a vote wasn’t what they were interested in.
What they were interested in was a “yes vote.” And they don’t intend to let the Senate fully move on until they get it.
And, incidentally, although Harry Reid promised you an “open” amendment process, it’s pretty clear that they don’t intend to give you a second shot at the Burr or Cornyn amendments — or at amendments to restrict state registration or confiscation of firearms which you might be interested in offering.
Furthermore, as Mayors Against Illegal Guns’ Mark Glaze made it clear, “the day after” background checks are signed into law, gun control advocates are going to be back all over again for a new traunch of gun control demands. Capitulation will merely serve as a platform for … more pain.
So, for those sixteen Republican senators who foolishly moved to proceed to Harry Reid’s GOP bash-o-thon so that “we can debate the issues,” there are now no painless solutions.
But the alternative which is least painful is for Republicans, as a caucus, to bring the debate to an end.
Pat Toomey, who supported gun control, put it well when he said: “I did the best I could, … but the Senate has spoken. … It’s time to move on.”
The Senate has spoken. And if the Republicans, as a caucus, embrace that proposition, the enthusiasm for picking off the lame and infirm from your herd will soon wane.
I have been around Washington for 38 years now. And the strategy of keeping an issue open for a year, so proponents can beat, threaten, bribe, and cajole vulnerable senators would have been regarded, for most of that time and by most of the Senate, as corrupt.
Please do not let the Senate, if it is even possible, sink even further into the moral abyss.
Gun control advocates have gotten the many votes they demanded. The Senate has worked its will. It’s time to move on.