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Is the National Rifle Association’s power on the wane? Please don’t beat the messenger, but that seems to be the thrust of a recent blog post from _the_ Economist that argues the NRA’s influence on national elections is mostly an illusion and that it’s also on the wrong side of changing demographic shifts that in the future will further erode its influence.

“…Paul Waldman, of the American Prospect, has recently argued that the NRA’s dominance is a myth. He has looked closely at the figures and writes, “Despite what the NRA has long claimed, it neither delivered Congress to the Republican party in 1994 nor delivered the White House to George W. Bush in 2000.” He also argues that NRA money has no impact on congressional elections, as it spreads its money over so many races, and that NRA endorsements are “almost meaningless” as most go to incumbent Republicans with little chance of losing.

The author also claims that despite an increase in gun sales nationwide, most of those sales are going to, well, old white guys who already have guns, and that the number of actual households with guns has been in a steady decline. The author also cites further demographic shifts toward more urban residents and a smaller percentage of the aforementioned old white dudes.

White males, the gun-loving sector of American society, also make up an increasingly smaller percentage of the population. What the industry actually needs is more Latino, black and female gun enthusiasts. But the NRA isn’t delivering these.”

Thoughts? Reaction? Rebuttal?