When you don’t live in a state but want to see how a state will fall on an issue, you tend to look at how the legislature is made up. If it’s mostly Democrat, you have ample reason to suspect that it’ll pass things like gun control.

Most of the time, that’s a safe bet. Now, it doesn’t mean a Democrat-controlled state will introduce gun control legislation, but it does suggest that if such a bill is introduced, it has a better chance of being passed.

Unless it seems, we’re talking about Delaware.

There, it seems that the Democrats are split on the issue of guns.

The demise of three gun bills blocked in committee earlier this month has pitted the Democratic Party against an unusual foe: itself.

The Delaware Democratic Party platform calls for “common sense gun safety measures.” But it was Democrats, who control both chambers of the General Assembly, who killed three firearm-related proposals.

Opposition from union members, a traditional Democratic constituency in Delaware, likely played a part in sinking the bills.


Well, sure. Unions may be a typical constituency for the Democrats, but these are blue-collar folks. Many of these folks are pro-gun folks who own firearms for both self-defense and hunting among other things.

And they made their voices heard.

Anti-gun control organizations such as the National Rifle Association and Delaware Gun Rights are generally seen as conservative, and those groups did flex their muscles in opposition to the bills, but some of the resistance also came from individuals usually aligned with Democrats.

Upward of 900 people crowded into a union hall in Newark a few weeks ago to express anger over the legislation, and while the gathering was not an official union event — the state’s major unions were deliberately neutral on the bills, according to Delaware AFL-CIO President James Maravelias — many of the attendees belong to labor organizations.

Mr. Maravelias posted a picture of the meeting on Facebook, urging individuals to pay attention to “the writing on the wall” and tagging Sen. Jack Walsh, a Stanton Democrat with strong ties to labor.

Mr. Maravelias elaborated on his post in an interview last week, saying he thought the meeting was something lawmakers should take note of.

The thing is, this might need to serve as a wakeup call for the Democrats.

While the Democrats are rolling harder and harder to the left, union members are still blue-collar workers who want things like jobs their guns, and to be left alone. Pushing for more and more gun control may have an impact that the party isn’t going to like.

It may well push the unions to support Republicans.

Already, there are a number of union members who support the GOP, of course, but this would take it to a different level. While the heads of labor unions may well continue to back Democrats, the rank-and-file folks are going to shift and support Republican candidates, thus making official labor union endorsements less than worthless.

If they were smart, these Democrats would shift gears and end this push for gun control.

The upside is that for Delaware, at least, it means no new restrictions on citizens’ God-given right to keep and bear arms. If only this were the norm throughout the nation.