‘One of her proudest achievements’

This LA Times article is mostly about Senator Dianne “Mr. and Mrs. America, turn them all in” Feinstein’s sometimes contentious relationship with her own party.

As Barack Obama and his fellow Democrats celebrate their political ascendancy, Dianne Feinstein is front and center. And that is not always a welcome thing for members of her own party.

In recent days Feinstein has sent an unmistakable signal to the president-elect and the rest of Washington: California’s senior senator will not be taken for granted or hew to the party line simply because that might seem proper at the rosy dawn of a new Democratic era.

Gun law issues are given only one short paragraph, and the article’s author’s take strikes me as a bit odd.

She would like to resurrect the federal assault weapons ban she regards as one of her proudest achievements. The ban expired in 2004, when Republicans controlled Congress. But such an effort could put Obama and Democratic leaders in a difficult spot, given their efforts to appeal to a broader swath of voters. During his campaign, Obama largely shied away from the gun debate.

I don’t doubt that Feinstein is “proud” of her tyrannical efforts; what I question is the idea that she’ll have to overcome any meaningful resistance from the Democratic Party leadership to bolster her pride some more.

What evidence is there that Obama and the rest are unwilling to venture into the “difficult spot” of a new and improved AWB? Certainly not on the Obama/Biden website:

Address Gun Violence in Cities: Obama and Biden would repeal the Tiahrt Amendment, which restricts the ability of local law enforcement to access important gun trace information, and give police officers across the nation the tools they need to solve gun crimes and fight the illegal arms trade. Obama and Biden also favor commonsense measures that respect the Second Amendment rights of gun owners, while keeping guns away from children and from criminals. They support closing the gun show loophole and making guns in this country childproof. They also support making the expired federal Assault Weapons Ban permanent.

If I look hard at the list of Obama’s cabinet appointees, I might find one or two who do not have a long record of rabid advocacy of citizen disarmament, but it certainly doesn’t look like a cabinet chosen with the idea of avoiding the gun issue.

Who else in the Democratic Party would try to stop her? Senate majority leader Harry Reid has not been nearly as overtly hostile to gun rights as Feinstein has, but to count on meaningful resistance from him is to cling to a thin “Reid,” indeed.

I don’t see the Democratic Party leadership fighting Feinstein on this, and am frankly not seeing much reason to expect much of a fight from the GOP, either.

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