According to the most recent NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll, the majority of Americans believe it is more important to reduce gun violence than to preserve gun rights after the shootings in Uvalde (Texas) and Buffalo, N.Y.
Although the margin of 59% to 35% is the largest in favor controlling gun violence in a decade, the numbers are comparable to those Marist has seen over the past four years following the Parkland, Fla. school shootings.
The new poll shows a sharp partisan divide aEUR", 92% of Democrats, 54% of Independents, and 70% of Republicans agree that it is more important to stop gun violence.
However, 56% gun owners believe it is more important than protecting gun rights to reduce gun violence.
Survey of 1,063 adults took place May 31- June 6, with a margin error of +/-4 4.3 percentage points. (The Uvalde shooting occurred May 24. 977 voters were interviewed. Answers to questions referring to voters have a +/– 4.5 percentage point margin for error. Live callers interviewed the respondents by cellphone and landline telephone. The results were adjusted to reflect the 2019 U.S. Census estimates of age, gender and income as well as region.
Three quarters of respondents stated that mass shootings made them more likely to vote for November. Democrats are nearly 20 points more likely than Republicans or independents to say this (84% vs. 66% for Republicans).
Majorities of voters indicated that they would vote for candidates who support stricter background checks (82%), increase mental health funding (86%), red flag laws (74%), and stricter gun laws overall (60%). They also want ban assault-style weapons like AR-15s and AK-47s (56%).
However, independents are divided on the issue of an assault-style weapon ban aEUR." 48% stated they would not vote for any candidate who wanted one, while 45% said that they would.
Police and family members can request that a judge temporarily ban guns from someone they consider a danger to themselves or others. Although they have been passed in several states, there isn’t a federal version.
This type of law is part of the bipartisan gun control negotiations that are taking place on Capitol Hill. As most Republicans oppose, the talks don't focus on more broad measures like universal background checks and banning assault-style guns.
Only 38% of those surveyed said that they would vote for a candidate who allows teachers to carry guns, a measure supported by gun rights activists. A mere 27% of those surveyed said they would vote for a candidate that receives contributions from National Rifle Association.
This poll shows a significant partisan divide with 8 out of 10 Democrats saying that they would vote against someone who allows teachers to carry guns. However, 7 in 10 Republicans say they would vote for the candidate.
Similar results can be seen when it comes to NRA donations. 8/10 Democrats say they would vote against anyone who receives them. 6/10 Republicans are the exact opposite.
Independents are split again on both questions, with many unanswered.
Although voters claim they support many of the gun laws that Democratic elected leaders have proposed, President Biden appears to be not benefitting.
At 38%, Biden's approval in the Marist poll is its lowest level since he took office.
The White House has major warning signs. Not only are 93% of Republicans unhappy with his job, but 58% of independents and 77% of Democrats also disapprove.
Biden's base continues to lack intensity. Respondents were almost three times more likely to strongly disapprove (40%) of Biden's job performance than to strongly approve (14%).
These numbers prove that Biden is a polarizing figure, who isn't firing up his base.
This is not surprising considering the rising gas prices and continued rise in inflation. When voters feel the pinch, they tend to blame the president.