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Published: Thursday, May 2 2013 12:00 a.m. MDT

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micawber
Centerville, UT

According to Gallup, it conducted a survey on January 19 and 20, which found that "91% of Americans said they personally would vote for a measure requiring criminal background checks for all gun sales. Gallup asked this question again in the April 22-25 survey and found a slight decline, to 83% support." The details about sample size, randomness, etc. can be found on Gallup's web site.

JoeBlow
Far East USA, SC

"I keep seeing in the media and from letters to the Deseret News that 90 percent of Americans want more gun control."

Kathryn,

Worded like that, I would agree with you that the numbers would not be 90%.

But, we are talking about background checks.

Here are 3 different polls.

(KUTV) A new study done by BYU’s Center for the Study of Elections and Democracy shows Utahns are in favor of background checks on guns.

According to the study, 82% of Utahns favor background checks on all potential gun buyers.

CNN poll

Date conducted: 1/14/2011 - 1/16/2011
Sample: 1,014 adults
Margin of error: +/- 3% pts

Question - Do you favor or oppose background checks on potential gun buyers?

Favor - 94%
Oppose - 6%

Pretty strait forward question.

The Quinnipiac University Poll,

Question - Would you favor or oppose requiring background checks on people buying guns at gun shows?

January 31, 2013 - Quinnipiac University Poll Finding Near 100% Support For Wider Background Checks For Gun-Buyers

Seems pretty clear to me. Survey after survey with straitforward questions about background checks.

How many more polls do you want? What polls would you like to use?

tenx
Santa Clara, UT

Maybe BHO said it so you know it must be true.

Nate
Pleasant Grove, UT

There were multiple surveys which showed that Americans agreed in principle with limited background checks. We were considerably less excited about specific proposals, including the latest one that died in the Senate.

If the Senate bill had been supported by the people, it would have passed. It wasn't, and it didn't.

one vote
Salt Lake City, UT

The vast majority support the proposition that the NRA and minority ran the filibuster. The vote changed the next elections and many Republicans are already down in the polls. The President knew that after the next elections, the backlash will make it a lock to pass reasonable background checks in the future. the NRA won the battle and lost the war.

KJB1
Eugene, OR

And all the polls that said President Obama was going to beat Romney last November were "skewed." Some people just have to live in their bubbles, I guess.

Nate
Pleasant Grove, UT

@The Real Maverick

No amount of polling will change what the Constitution says: "[T]he right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed."

Name-calling won't help, either. It only exposes the weakness of your arguments.

Truthseeker
SLO, CA

Kathy

You can find the answer to your question in a matter of seconds by conducting a search using "gun control polls."

Most polls use a sample size of approx 1000 people. You can also find detail about the various polls. But even when a Fox News poll asked the question, "Do you favor or oppose expanding background checks on gun buyers?"

82% responded they favor expanding background checks.

At various times in other polls 90% of those questioned supported enhanced background checks.

The Real Maverick
Orem, UT

@ Nate

"No amount of polling will change what the Constitution says: "[T]he right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.""

So in other words, anyone and everyone should have access to any and every weapon ever created? Otherwise, it would be an "infringement" upon the 2nd amendment, right?

Can you yell "fire" in a movie theater? Can you buy nukes or machine guns at your local gun store?

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah

Is it possible that 90% of Americans have not studied the Constitution?

Is it possible that 90% of Americans would give away a guaranteed "right" so that the government can give them comfort?

Is it possible that 90% of Americans have not studied "Fast and Furious" to know how the government deals with guns and gangs?

Is it possible that 90% of Americans would prefer that government have the power to decide which citizen can keep and bear arms and which citizen cannot?

Sadly, the answer to all of those questions is that 90% of Americans have not done due diligence on this issue.

Sadly, to some Americans, freedom is just a word. They would give their freedom to the government is exchange for empty promises.

Kent C. DeForrest
Provo, UT

Nate and Mike,

"A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed."

You seem to like a strict interpretation of the Constitution (in Mike's case, the stricter the better). Okay, strictly interpreted, the only reason people can keep and bear arms is so we can have a well-regulated militia. We restrict all sorts of arms--from nuclear warheads on down to hand grenades--to only our well-regulated militia. Guns fall under this same logic.

If you want a strict interpretation of the Constitution, it says nothing about people having any right to own guns so they can hunt, shoot at targets, protect themselves, or even feed their families. In other words, government can restrict gun rights in every way possible, except to deny our well-regulated militia the arms necessary to defend the country.

Happy Valley Heretic
Orem, UT

So according to Mitt 47% deserve no attention because they haven't paid enough to have a say.
and then Mike Say's 90% of Americans are stupid or just ignorant of his interpretations of the constitution.
then Nate says "No amount of polling will change what the Constitution says:" as he selects a portion of the sentence that he agrees with.

I think the majority does understand better, than the 1% who think they know better.

Irony Guy
Bountiful, Utah

Gallup is the gold standard in survey science. At least 83% of Americans, at a 95% confidence level, support universal background checks. And that's a fact, the letter writer notwithstanding. That makes our Congressional representatives dramatically un-representative.

Nate
Pleasant Grove, UT

@The Real Maverick

Straw men don't help your argument either.

@Roger

It doesn't say the right of the militia to keep and bear arms -- it says the right of the people.

@Happy Valley

I agree with the entire sentence. I quoted the portion Maverick needed to hear.

The numbers you are throwing around are meaningless. The poll question was about background checks. As I said above, 90% of Americans are willing to consider background checks. The proposed legislation had much less support. Not enough to get it through the Senate.

homebrew
South Jordan, UT

Yeah 90% want expanded background checks, But what does the bible say??

atl134
Salt Lake City, UT

One of the weird quirks is that 80+% in polling support background checks on all gun purchases but only about 50% support increasing gun regulation. The oddity there is because roughly 50% of people polled believe that we already require background checks on all gun purchases but that's not true, since they aren't required for private sales. What it results in though is that a lot of people who oppose adding gun control incorrectly believe we already have background checks for all gun purchases, so they start to believe there's something sinister (when there isn't) in things like the background check expansion proposed in the Senate.

LDS Liberal
Farmington, UT

@Kent C. DeForrest
Provo, UT

You seem to like a strict interpretation of the Constitution (in Mike's case, the stricter the better).

Great arguement ....

I expect Mike R. to pull out the old 'District of Columbia v. Heller' ruling by the US Supremem Court stating a person has the right to protect themselves....and having a hand gun is constitutional.

But don't ever EVER expect him to support Roe v. Wade by that very same exact US Supreme Court.

LDS Liberal
Farmington, UT

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah
Is it possible that 90% of Americans have not studied the Constitution?

============

Lesson #1 from Kent C. DeForrest:

"A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed."

You seem to like a strict interpretation of the Constitution (in Mike's case, the stricter the better). Okay, strictly interpreted, the only reason people can keep and bear arms is so we can have a well-regulated militia. We restrict all sorts of arms--from nuclear warheads on down to hand grenades--to only our well-regulated militia. Guns fall under this same logic.

----

i.e., Mike Richards just failed Constitutional Law.

Nate
Pleasant Grove, UT

@LDS Liberal "...failed..."

There isn't a Supreme Court in history which has interpreted the Second Amendment the way Kent has twisted it. The failure is his.

LDS Liberal
Farmington, UT

@JoeBlow
Far East USA, SC

Blue Ribbon winning answer on this thread!
Great comment.

----------

"I have observed that one can find a survey to support nearly any position on any dispute."
Kathryn was right about that --
Why else would FoxNews polls keep telling their lemming listeners that Mitt Romney was so way far out ahead -- when everyone else said he wasn't?

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