It’s looking like gun owners actually had a pretty good night in House races across the country, though anti-gun Democrats are still expected to remain in control of the chamber. In both Colorado and New Mexico, “gunsense” candidates went down to defeat in two races that focused in large part on gun control and Second Amendment issues.
Lauren Boebert, the owner of Shooters Grill in Rifle, Colorado, won the 3rd Congressional District seat over Democrat Dianne Mitsch Bush, with the Democrat conceding late Tuesday night.
“It is an incredible honor and privilege to win this election and have the opportunity to be the first mom to serve Colorado’s Third Congressional District,” Boebert said in a statement.
She thanked supporters in a Facebook Live video.
In her own statement, Mitsch Bush said, “The voters have spoken. I did not get enough votes to win.”
While CO-3 is a heavily Republican district, Democrats across the country targeted Boebert for defeat, pouring money into the race in an attempt to flip the seat. It looks like Boebert will end up wining by 5-6 points, and she’ll be a strong voice for gun owners in the U.S. House.
In New Mexico’s 2nd Congressional District, Democrat Xochitl Torres Small was unseated by Republican Yvette Herrell in a race in which Torres Small’s supposed support for the Second Amendment became a big issue. The Democrat cut a campaign ad featuring her hunting in the desert, but the fact that she voted for universal background checks while calling herself a champion of the right to keep and bear arms undoubtably hurt her in her re-election bid.
Unfortunately, gun control advocates picked up a big seat by winning the Arizona senate seat held by Martha McSally. Mark Kelly, co-founder of the Giffords gun control group along with his wife Gabrielle Giffords, has been declared the winner of the race, which wasn’t exactly unexpected. McSally, in my opinion, was extremely ineffective in how she framed the gun debate, going after the Giffords organization for supporting candidates like Ilhan Omar of Minnesota rather than talking about the anti-gun laws that Kelly and his gun control group supports.
Kelly largely ducked the gun control issue on the campaign trail, but my guess is that he’ll quickly become one of the biggest champions of gun control in the U.S. Senate. For now, at least, it looks like he might not be in a position to actually ensure passage of any anti-gun bills if the GOP maintains control of the chamber.
If Arizona does end up going for Joe Biden, there are going to be a lot of think pieces written about what caused the state to turn blue, but I think a big component was the lackluster campaign of McSally. Yes, Trump’s disparagement of John McCain cost him the support of at least some Republicans, but McSally gave them little reason to hold their nose and vote for the GOP. In fact, at the moment Trump is running a closer race in Arizona than McSally, which indicates that McSally may have actually hurt Trump more than the president himself.