The results of a new poll from Gallup indicate that President Barack Obama’s push for stricter gun control may have actually led more Americans to feel that the Nation needs less strict gun laws.
Americans may be dissatisfied with gun laws because they believe they should be stricter, or because they believe the laws are too strict as they are. Therefore, Gallup asks those who are dissatisfied with gun laws to choose among explanations for their dissatisfaction. Those who are dissatisfied have historically leaned heavily in the direction of wanting stricter rather than less strict laws.
But this year, the gap between those wanting stricter gun laws and those wanting less strict laws narrowed as a result of a sharp increase in the percentage of Americans who want less strict laws, now at 16% up from 5% a year ago. Support for making gun laws stricter fell to 31% from 38% last January. The January 2013 poll was conducted shortly after the December 2012 Sandy Hook school shooting tragedy, which sparked some state governments to consider new gun laws and a robust national discussion about the issue.
Democratic Representatives Alan Lowenthal (Calif.), Mike Thompson (Calif.), and Elizabeth Esty (Conn.) introduced a House resolution Wednesday to renew the Congressional push to increase gun control in the United States.
The resolution states:
Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that gun violence is a public health issue and Congress should enact by the end of the 113th Congress comprehensive Federal legislation that protects the Second Amendment and keeps communities safe and healthy, including expanding enforceable background checks for all commercial gun sales, improving the mental health system in the United States, and making gun trafficking and straw purchasing a Federal crime.
With Gallup’s data showing that Americans are increasingly irritated by strict gun laws, Democrats who take up the President’s anti-gun agenda could risk hurting the Party’s chances in the 2014 midterms.