Democratic presidential hopeful Beto O’Rourke has seen no sustained increase in his polling since the September Democratic debate, where he vociferously supported gun confiscation.
In the RealClearPolitics polling average before September’s debate, Beto averaged 2.8 percent support. His declaration at that debate that “hell yes, we’re going to take your AR-15, your AK-47” appears to have had little impact: In Tuesday’s average, Beto recorded 2.6 percent support. The interim has seen his average fluctuate between 3.3 percent and 1.6 percent.
Prior to his dramatic announcement, O’Rourke had supported other new gun control laws, including bans on the future sales of certain rifles. He began to support a mandatory buyback of those firearms—with possible jailtime for gun owners who do not comply—only after falling well below his initial polling average of 10 percent, as well as in the wake of a mass shooting in El Paso, Texas, this summer.
Rather than garnering new support, Beto’s embrace of gun confiscation prompted backlash across the political spectrum. MSNBC host Andrea Mitchell said the move likely complicated efforts by Democrats to broker a gun-control deal with President Donald Trump. Billionaire gun-control activist Michael Bloomberg called it “so impractical.” Senator Joe Manchin (D., W.Va.) said, “Beto O’Rourke’s not taking my guns away from me.” One mother even drove several hours to a campaign rally to tell Beto, “hell no you’re not!” – READ MORE