(The following was originally published in the National Journal.)
HARRODSBURG, Ky.—David Patterson is driving around the small town he patrols as a cop, when he veers off a main road into a small lot in front of a building labeled “GUNS.” He slows the car to a roll as he points out one of the few yard signs anywhere in Kentucky with his name on it.
“In front of the gun shop,” he chuckles. “Of course.”
The sign itself is the obligatory red, white, and blue, and with miniature stars and text so small it almost requires a squint to read. Below his name is the office Patterson seeks: the United States Senate.
Patterson is off-duty and in shorts and sneakers, but there’s still a handgun holstered to his hip. It presses visibly against his tee shirt. “I’m a big Second Amendment guy,” he says.