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Thursday, March 3, 2011

New Mayors Poll of Virginians on Guns Flawed

The Richmond Times Dispatch is reporting today that Mayors Against Illegal Guns (MAIG) released a poll of Virginians that says a large majority support stiffer gun regulations.
•84 percent of Virginians support requiring gun dealers to notify police when someone fails a background check.
•88 percent of Virginians support a law to require background checks for all guns sold at gun shows.
•85 percent of Virginians support tracking the bulk purchase of semi-automatic assault rifles.
First, most everyone knows you can get the outcome you want from any poll simply by the way the question is asked.  Add to that the fact that the poll was conducted by Democratic polling firm Hart Research, and one can quickly determine that the questions are most likely more favorable to an anti-rights perspective.  In addition, the regions of the state where the respondants live are not identified in the polling data provided by MAIG.  So, if the respondants were slanted toward urban areas or Northern Virginia, one would expect responses more favorable to gun control.

The MAIG Poll asked  questions for everyone, then had specific questions of people surveyed in certain states, including Virginia.

While the MAIG press release noted that there was some support for stricter gun laws in Virginia regarding the sale of firearms, when you look at the results of the poll, there was actually a larger percentage of Virginia respondants (46%) that said they should stay the same than thought they should be stricter (42%).

On the Federal legislative front, New York U.S. Senator Charles "Chucky" Schumer used the occasion of the poll results release to introduce the "Fix Gun Checks Act of 2011."  The legislation would require federal agencies disseminate records on people who are prohibited from purchasing firearms, such as felons, drug abusers and the mentally ill. It also would require background check on private sale of firearms.

In the lead of to the 2012 election, the gun ban lobby is doing everything they can to get President Obama to take a more prominent role in pushing their agenda.  The fact that Chucky Schumer is now introducing legislation in the U.S. Senate, it appears that the leadership of the Democratic Party is ready to once again step into the issue and push the agenda too.

I will be discussing the poll on today's NRANews' Daily News at 5:00 PM.

Correction: The documents provided by MAIG regarding the Poll shows support for stricter regulation of firearm sales to be 55%-35% in Virginia but does not indicate if that is among all respondants or just among the non-gun owning households.  The numbers referenced in the above paragraph refer to the rate of support among gun owning households, which they provided as a separate category to show that "Even in gun households, there is some support for stricter gun laws."

1 comment:

Andy said...

The Richmond Times Dispatch obviously just copied a press release here and did little investigative reporting of their own. The question in the MAIG survey about tracking bulk purchases of semi-auto rifles actually ends with the slanted wording "which have become the weapon of choice of Mexican drug cartels". Not to mention that there is no such thing as a "semi-automatic assault rifle".