Bad news for Joe Biden and anti-gun Democrats: most Americans aren’t interested in new gun control measures like his ban on modern sporting rifles and so-called high capacity ammunition magazines. The new finding is courtesy of the Gallup Poll, which surveyed 1,023 adults to find out how satisfied they were with the current crop of gun laws on the books.
Gallup’s headline about their new survey focuses on the fact that a majority of Americans say they’re dissatisfied with our current gun laws, but that doesn’t mean that every one of those respondents wants more gun control. 56% of respondents expressed dissatisfaction with the status quo, compared to 42% expressing satisfaction, but when Gallup dug a little deeper and asked why folks were dissatisfied, they found out that quite a few of those respondents want to see some or all gun control laws repealed.
According to Gallup, 42% of their respondents said they’re satisfied with the current crop of gun laws, while 41% wanted more gun control, and 8% said they wanted to see fewer gun control laws on the books. Another 7% are both dissatisfied with the current laws on the books but want them to remain in place. Yeah, I can’t figure out that last group of respondents either.
The percentage of respondents who do want more gun control is quite a bit higher than it was in 2012, but it’s declined by four points since Gallup posed the same question in 2018, when 46% of those answering the survey said they wanted more gun control laws on the books. That was a 20-year high in Gallup’s survey, but even then support for new restrictions on our right to keep and bear arms failed to reach the 50% mark.
It’s no surprise that dissatisfaction with our current laws is much higher among Democrats than Republicans. While 69% of Republicans say they’re satisfied, just 22% of Democrats say the same thing. As recently as 2012 40% of Democrats responding to Gallup’s survey expressed satisfaction with the gun laws on the books, but that number has cratered ever since; reaching a low of just 17% in 2020 before ticking up four points in the most recent survey.
One of the most interesting findings of the survey, to me anyway, is that Gallup registered almost no change in opinion in it’s most recent survey compared to 2020 and 2019. Even though we just went through the busiest year in history in terms of gun sales, and the National Shooting Sports Foundation estimates that more than 8-million Americans became first time gun owners in 2020, this year’s results aren’t much different than the last survey taken before the Great Gun Run of 2020 began.
In 2019, 56% of respondents said they weren’t satisfied with the gun laws on the books, while 39% said they were satisfied. The level of dissatisfaction has remained unchanged, while those expressing satisfaction has ticked up three points to 42%. I’m somewhat surprised that the record-setting gun sales in 2020 didn’t seem to have much of an impact on our opinions of the gun laws on the books, particularly given the problems that we’ve seen with some jurisdiction in processing gun permits or carry licenses in a timely manner. Of course, given the fact that the Gallup sample size was only 1,023 people, it may very well be that the polling firm simply didn’t encounter any of the hundreds of thousands of us who’ve seen our rights denied because of the government’s failure to abide by its own regulations.
Anti-gun Democrats may have broad support within their party when it comes to new gun control laws, but most Americans say that the laws should either be kept as they are or repealed in part. I suspect, however, that the vast majority of media that report on the Gallup poll will only highlight the top-line result showing a majority of Americans are dissatisfied with our current gun laws, without explaining that what the survey actually shows; nearly 60% of us don’t want Biden’s gun ban, Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee’s ridiculous gun licensing bill, or any other new restriction on our right to keep and bear arms.
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