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Poll: 69 Percent of Americans Oppose Congress's D.C. Gun Bill

The U.S. House of Representatives is considering a bill that would overturn local D.C. gun laws, and District leaders are scrambling this week to revise their own legislation in a way that might be more acceptable to Congress.

Now comes a poll commissioned by DC Vote, the non-profit lobbying group pushing to get the city a vote in Congress. The poll of 1,004 adults was conducted by KRC Research from Sept. 12 through 14, and finds that 69 percent of respondents oppose Congress's move, including 52 percent who "strongly oppose" it. Furthermore, 60 percent said the District would be more less safe if Congress follows through with the House bill, while 28 percent said the city would be more safe. The poll had a margin of error of 3.1 percent, according to KRC Research.

You can read the view the questions and answers here.

By David A Nakamura  |  September 15, 2008; 5:56 PM ET
Categories:  Gun Ban Case  
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Constitutional rights are not subject to poll results.

Posted by: GrayCoyote | September 16, 2008 4:05 AM | Report abuse

Where the respondents told that DC officials are idiots?

Posted by: DC 4 Ever | September 16, 2008 5:13 AM | Report abuse

Amazing that when a poll asks a totally misleading question, it gets the results is sponsors wanted!

Posted by: Truth Squad | September 16, 2008 9:07 AM | Report abuse

I don't see what's so misleading here. They explained what the bill would do. When people hear about it, they don't like it. No sane person possibly could.

And with all due respect to the Constitution, there's a line between constitutionally valid and just plain stupid, and this bill crossed that line.

Posted by: Zach | September 16, 2008 3:46 PM | Report abuse

So "a poll commissioned by DC Vote" came back with a result overwhelmingly supportive of DC Vote's position. What a shock, NOT! I'm sure that any poll from a group that believes X will always come back with results supportive of X. This poll should be taken with two pounds of salt.

Posted by: SMP0328 | September 16, 2008 7:44 PM | Report abuse

The question asked in the DC Vote-sponsored nationally representative survey was fair. Granted, it left out some important points. It did not, for example, remind Americans that Washington DC citizens do not have any voting representation in Congress, the body that is discussing the legislation in question that will impact their home. Further, it did not mention that the DC Chief of Police, the mayor, the Council, and most DC residents, oppose by wide margins the reduction of local gun control laws. All in all, the question laid out the issue fairly and in a straightforward way.

Putting aside the question of whether the permanent local residents should have a say in this decision and outcome directly affecting their neighborhoods, the record shows that views on guns relate in many ways to urban vs. rural. Areas where people hunt more like guns more, and areas where there are fewer things to hunt think guns will only lead to more (not less or the same amount of) trouble. It's not as if the citizens of DC are demanding that people living in areas that want to have guns all over the place not be allowed to have them. DC is only asking that it be allowed to decide the issue in its own area, locally, respectful of its citizens who are permanent residents -- not as part of a national pawn. Loosening the gun laws in DC will be more respectful of the people in DC who want guns--a minority of good honest people and some criminals, many of whom already have them.

Clearly, the District's elected officials and citizens are on the defense due to the Supreme Court ruling. And so today the local DC government made it clear that DC residents may keep semi-auto pistols in their homes, etc. The line on the field is moving in favor of those who want to have very liberal gun laws in a very urbanized area where there are no animals to hunt and some very crazy people and a lot of protests and high-profile public events for which the local DC police are responsible and local citizens pay for. Really now, is it so hard to believe that Americans, even the ones outside the District, would worry about allowing people to carry weapons in the nation's capital, and perhaps even think DC residents should have something to say about the matter? (If Congress wants to let people carry weapons around DC, perhaps they should start on their own turf, the capitol.)

A recent Washington Post poll found that: "72 percent of all Americans said they believe individuals have gun rights under the Second Amendment, that such protections are not limited to 'militias.' Twenty percent thought the constitutional guarantee covers "only the rights of the states to maintain militias.' But 58 percent in that national poll supported a D.C.-like ban on private handguns and trigger lock requirements [NATIONALLY]; 38 percent opposed those restrictions. (In a January Post poll in the District itself, even more, 76 percent, favored the law, including 60 percent who said they were "strongly" behind the city ordinance.)"

If so many Americans support gun control nationally, is it really surprising that even more support gun control in the nation's capital?

Quit blaming the polls when you're not reflected in the majority of Americans. And if the two pounds of salt isn't enough to ease your mind, remember that much of the time the House of Representatives doesen't vote with the majority of Americans, and rarely with un-represented DC. And that's a hometown view!

Posted by: hometown boy | September 16, 2008 9:22 PM | Report abuse

Certain principles are the basis for Constitutions, their provisions, their amendments, and therefore TRUMP those documents...One of them is that Just Power derives from the CONSENT of The Governed.

Posted by: citizenw | September 16, 2008 10:18 PM | Report abuse

This is a typical poll designed to get the results that the DC bureaucrats wanted, a validation of their totally illegal gun ban. The majority of states clearly not only want the right to keep and bear arms for home self defense, but also allow concealed carry (with proper training) so that citizens can protect themselves and others almost everywhere. Exceptions apply state-by-state for schools, airports, places serving booze, etc, but by and large the right to gun ownership is permitted. DC, and the corrupt and incompetent bozos running it see "gun control" as an alternative to an effective police department. The nation's capital is a criminal haven and the chief of police is incapable of doing anything about it, so let's go after the people's right to defend themselves - what a bunch of idiots.

Posted by: DadR | September 17, 2008 3:35 PM | Report abuse

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