They know there will never be a standalone gun control law because the climate is too polarized, with zealous extremists on each side who either want to ban all guns or deregulate the gun market entirely, and that the deregulatory side is more zealous than the ban-it-all side. So the gun-favoring status quo remains.
We just saw the same failure to pass "commonsense bipartisan" deals on immigration, as the open borders extreme is more well funded and zealous, including most Republican politicians, compared to the side that wants to deport illegals and close the borders. So the immigrant-favoring status quo remains.
Well then, what if the side that wants to up-end the Reaganite status quo on each of these issues cut a deal with each other? It would not be a grand compromise on a single issue -- that's impossible in a hyper-polarized climate -- but a compromise on a pair of issues, with each side of the polarized spectrum gaining something big while giving up something big in exchange.
If it's really the most dear-to-your-heart policy to ban assault weapons, then you ought to be prepared to give up something that is just as dear-to-your-heart that the other side wants dearly.
This process could get hairy if too many issues were included in a single bill, as each side would squabble about how much each component was worth. There is nothing objectively quantitative to argue about -- it's either a subjectively big issue or it isn't, and something big is worth trading for something big.
So if the point were to include as many issues as possible, they should be split up into a series of bills. Too many issues in a single bill gives partisans too many distinct reasons to hate it, and it's all or nothing, so the outcome would probably be nothing.
If gun control advocates aren't prepared to give up anything of real value to the other side, then they reveal themselves to just be full of shit, pretending that it's the most serious and tearjerking cause of our time while being unwilling to pay a red cent to solve it.
Ditto for those who think America is already over-crowded in its labor and housing markets, and wants more or less zero immigration. If it's that important, they should be willing to give up something important too.
You'd think they'd get their way after electing the most hardline immigration candidate to the presidency we've seen in a long while, but evidently that's not how it works, and some kind of compromise ought to be struck -- but on a separate issue, not a watered-down immigration bill, which wouldn't pass even in weak form due to Democrat partisans not getting enough.
The immigration restriction side is more than rational and willing enough to compromise, as shown by this wheel-and-deal proposal from Ann Coulter way back at the early stage of Trump's campaign:
I don't care if @realDonaldTrump wants to perform abortions in White House after this immigration policy paper. http://t.co/l7nq8gN7i5— Ann Coulter (@AnnCoulter) August 16, 2015
One side is dead serious about getting its way, and holds very little sacred in relationship to it. Abortion on demand? Ban assault weapons? Cover Reagan's official White House portrait in the gay rainbow flag? Conditional on deporting the illegals (maybe excepting the DACA enrollees) and closing the borders -- you've got yourself a deal. If a future government opens the borders and refuses to deport illegals, then abortion becomes illegal, assault weapons become available at CVS, and Obama's official WH portrait gets a giant red MAGA hat painted onto it.
The liberal side had better cut deals while it still has control over the Democrat party, since disillusionment with the GOP among Trumpian populists is about to send a whole shitload of moderates and conservatives over to the Bernie party and begin influencing that party for a change, making it far less beholden to liberal causes.
At that point it'll be the Democrats who start feeling as much heat from their angry new voters that those voters used to direct at gun-squishy Republicans.
I think the Democrats still believe that pursuing a "fifty state strategy" to recover the more than 1,000 offices they've lost since Obama, means they're going to impose their liberal extremist views on their newfound voters -- rather than having to cut deals with immigration restrictionist Alabamians after a Democrat wins a Senate seat there, for example.
But again, I don't see that taking the form of presenting middle-of-the-road positions on every issue, a la the failed neoliberal approach to win over red and purple states. They'll have to do what Trump and Bernie did -- give them a big unequivocal win on X, while asking for an unequivocal concession on Y. The middle-way pragmatic approach leaves everybody unsatisfied across all issues, while the trade-and-barter pragmatic approach leaves everybody satisfied on at least half the issues.
Ending back on the topic of gun control, I only trust Bernie type Democrats to pull this off. See his positions on the issue. He's at least trying to find a compromise with both sides on the issue, rather than doing the neoliberal culture war schtick of inflaming the emotionally retarded cable news junkies with phony heroism in order to distract them from the reality that they're just shilling for Wall Street banks and Silicon Valley digital slave plantations.
Certainly Stephen Miller should be willing to strike a bargain like that. If we got enough conservative media figures like Ann Coulter or Lou Dobbs to sign onto it, it would satisfy both the immigration restriction side as well as the gun-grabbing side. That would be a real sacrifice on their part in order to get something that their side really wants. And likewise for Bernie and others who want to make the Democrats more competitive around the country again.
Lord knows Trump would eat up the opportunity to sign a grand bargain that solved two of the major issues of our time, in the eyes of otherwise polarized camps of people.
The Democrats have never faced a Republican electorate and a Republican president who held so few things sacred from the Reaganite orthodoxy. They'd better strike while the iron is hot, or they'll get nothing once we storm their party's primaries in the wake of disillusionment with the GOP, and become a dug-in zealous voting bloc of closed-border Democrats.