The Smallest Minority on earth is the individual. Those who deny individual rights cannot claim to be defenders of minorities. - Ayn Rand
"Want to bet that gun control will be a major topic in the next Presidential election?"
No...not yet,not from the Dems.
It's too soon after the 1994 Congressionals for the Dems to want any part of the gun-grabber stain to stick to 'em again. They JUST got the majorities back, they're in no hurry to throw 'em away so quickly.
It'll take another decade at least of academia and MSM bleatings to hoodwink the pols into denying the reality of the Gun GrassRoots.
OTOH, if I was a "triangulatin" kinda guy and I worked for a GOP face, I'd roll gun control up with gay marriage and whatever "fix" for the "ilegal immoral war" thing someone's assuredly dreaming up, and back the Dems into wanting to amend the Constitution in favor of these three issues...puts an anchor around the Dems' necks.
I expect the court to deny certiorari and dodge the question once more.
Denying cert. means PARKER stands as decided. It's definitely in conflict with other C.C.A. decisions, notably SILVERIA. It would be the responsible thing to do. There really isn't any S. C. jurisprudence on the 2nd. Amendment. And there are some Justices who are just itching to affirm this case. I figure they accept, and I'd bet money on it.
Alternately, D.C. could just surrender, and deal with issuing pistol permits a la NYC.
Furthermore, a denial of cert isn't necessarily an entire loss.
The forces of organized gun bigotry have been saying and implying for years that denial of cert that lets anti gun rulings stand indicates agreement with anti gun rulings.
Having a counterexample in which denial of cert lets a progun ruling stand pretty much deflates that argument.
As geekWithA.45 said, the other reason to deny the en banc hearing is that it keeps control of an appeal in DC's hands.
They may have decided it's better to lose DC than to lose all. After all, even if they have to let you have a gun in DC they don't have to let you buy one there.