The 6+1 Pillars of Gun Ownership

Andrew D Ellis
4 min readDec 10, 2018

Democrats would have us think that the November House elections were a dazzling display of rational thinking by a substantial of Americans in both red and blue states.

Here’s the real news: the Republicans still managed to capture approximately 45% of the House and increased their numbers in the Senate. The wave should have been a tsunami given the conduct of the Republican President-but it wasn’t.

Phil Bump of the Washington Post writes that the lesson of 2018 is that the Democrats don’t need to soften their progressive message to win rural votes. Rather, in his view, there aren’t enough rural votes to make “softening” justifiable. The “softer” messages loses votes on a net basis within any given state. (Ergo, Gillam loses in Florida.)

I suspect that Mr. Bump, who I greatly admire, would readily acknowledge that, in fives states (Florida, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, North Carolina, and Michigan), Secretary Clinton lost by a collective margin of 363,968 votes. In those same states, the Libertarian Party (and to a much lesser extent the Green Party) garnered 971,674 votes. Those five states represent 90 Electoral College votes.

So, in those five states in 2020, he might say that the Democratic Party has to do THREE things: (i) commit to a progressive agenda; (ii) increase the turn-out of the base; and (iii) pick off at least 365,000 of those Libertarian/Green voters and something more than 50% of the balance to win the White House.

6+1 Pillars of Gun Ownership

Of those five states, Florida, Pennsylvania and North Carolina are among the Top 10 states in terms of gun ownership (i.e., the number of people who own one or more guns). So, why do Democrats allow themselves to be demonized as being “anti-gun” owners and ownership? Gun owners in those three states (and throughout the US) with whom libertarianism clearly resonates would be far more inclined to vote Democratic if they didn’t feel like that party was vilifying them.

The Democrats can satisfy their core base (as Mr. Bump recommends) and strip off some portion of the gun-owning community that, to date, has voted Republican or Libertarian or Green. The question is “how?”

Here are the 6 Pillars of Gun Ownership that should guide the Democrats on this issue:

Andrew D Ellis