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Poll Finds Support For Stricter Gun Laws

by | Mar 6, 2013 9:16am () Comments | Commenting has expired | Share
Posted to: Town News, Newtown, Poll, Public Safety, State Capitol

Hours after the legislature’s gun task force released its divided recommendations on stricter gun control measures, the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute unveiled a poll, which shows voters support stricter gun laws 66 to 30 percent.

The poll of 1,009 voters conducted March 4-5 found 93 percent support universal background checks, including 89 percent of gun owners, and 68 percent support an expansion of the assault weapon ban. But gun owners oppose the expansion of the assault weapon ban 49 to 44 percent.

If the assault weapon ban is expanded as proposed by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and some legislative Democrats, the ban would include a ban on popular semi-automatic and modern sporting rifles.

The poll also found that the public supports banning high capacity magazines 68 to 28 percent, but gun owners are divided 49 to 48 percent on the measure.

Connecticut Against Gun Violence has called for limiting handgun purchases to one per month, which is a measure voters supported 63 to 31 percent, including 50 to 46 percent of gun owners.

About 85 percent of voters approve of requiring a permit to carry all guns. Currently, in Connecticut only handguns require a permit. The poll found gun owners support the measure 71 to 28 percent.

“In the wake of the Newtown tragedy, there is overwhelming support among Connecticut voters for strengthening the state’s gun laws,” Doug Schwartz, Quinnipiac Poll Director, said. “It is remarkable how bipartisan the support is for some of the most talked-about gun-control measures. Universal background checks tops the list with 93 percent support, higher than we’ve ever seen for any issue in 20 years of Connecticut surveys.”

The poll also found that gun issues are not partisan issues.

“Republican voters are divided 45 - 48 percent on the general question, ‘Do you support or oppose stricter gun-control laws in Connecticut.’ They support, however, most of the specific measures,” Schwartz added.

The Newtown tragedy makes them more likely to support gun-control, 54 percent of Connecticut voters say, while 43 percent say it makes no difference.

Voters are divided on a proposal to prohibit people convicted of drunk driving from owning guns, with 45 percent in favor and 48 percent opposed.

And for those lawmakers who are concerned about their re-election campaigns, by a 42 to 20 percent margin, voters are more likely rather than less likely to back a state legislator who votes for stricter gun control. Another 35 percent say this won’t affect their vote.

“Connecticut voters are not optimistic that Democratic and Republican elected officials can or will act together to reduce gun violence,” Schwartz said. “Democrats are optimistic 50 to 43 percent, but Republicans are not, 64 to 32 percent, and independent voters are pessimistic, 58 to 35 percent.”

Twenty-seven percent of those surveyed identified themselves as gun owners. The poll has a 3.1 percent margin of error.

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(18) Archived Comments

posted by: Chien DeBerger | March 6, 2013  9:51am

“Laws that forbid the carrying of arms… disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes… Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man.” Thomas Jefferson - The Commonplace Book

posted by: lebron | March 6, 2013  9:59am

1)“Effective on passage, ban the sale to Connecticut residents the sale of Assault Rifles as directed by the State Legislature, (but do not prohibit the manufacture)

2)“Effective on passage, ban the sale to Connecticut residents the sale of Large Capacity magazines as directed by the State Legislature, (but do not prohibit the manufacture)

So basically “We the People of Connecticut” are to stupid and unworthy to possess something other State Residents can, but god forbid we stop the manufacture to these Evil objects and the state revenue that they will generate. I have one word for our elected Officials
I can only hope that if this idiotic proposal becomes “Law” that the Manufacturers of these items exit the State and find a more suitable place to live and work. Because I for one will be following very soon.

posted by: Greg | March 6, 2013  11:43am

So now we will have stricter gun control, but where is the proposed legislation for crime control and crime prevention? 

As the discussion has gone round and round here ad nauseum, blaming the gun for crime is akin to blaming a hammer for a poorly built house and blaming a car for drunk driving. Someone, somewhere, makes a decision to pull a trigger, beat someone with a baseball bat, or stab with a knife. Nothing in the proposed legislation, save expanded background checks, does a thing to actually prevent someone from committing a crime, with or without a gun. 

Who wants to bet when this legislature passes these gun control laws, and they will, we’ll still see violence in Hartford/New Haven/Bridgeport? Even then, the dillusion in the Capital will still focus on the tool and not the person committing a crime. Oh, and we’ll still release violent criminals early from prison…

posted by: bob8/57 | March 6, 2013  11:55am


Compelling data, hopefully our representatives will enact all of these common sense proposals. Perhaps then the lunatic-fringers will make good on their oh-so-prolific threats and vacate the state.

posted by: OutOfOutrage | March 6, 2013  12:55pm


I have no problem with some of these proposals but let’s not pretend that they have anything to do with preventing another Newtown shooting.  Until you can legislate a way to prevent a mentally unstable person from stealing a weapon, killing the owner and going on a shooting spree then you are not addressing the issue.  You may as well go back to taxing tanning salons & hand rolled cigarettes.

posted by: sparkplug | March 6, 2013  1:32pm

Voters are more likely rather than less likely to back a state legislator who votes for stricter gun control.

Gee, what an conveniently timed poll. Any legislator that actually believes this tripe and ultimately supports it will be weeping in their beer when they’re tossed out in two years. Both Democrat and Republican gun owners are going to go ballistic (if you’ll forgive the pun), and this time around it won’t be welfare recipients determining the outcome of the election, it will be highly motivated gun rights advocates, both right and left.

posted by: Greg | March 6, 2013  5:18pm

Sparkplug: I have to disagree with you.  We live in a true-blue state that elects a supermajority of very left leaning legislators with zero remorse for what comes out of the Capital, be it gun control, taxes, spending, social programs, regulation, etc.  Sad as it is, the voters of CT get what they paid for and you and I are not going to change the minds of a Martin Looney or Beth Bye no matter how much logic we use or how loud we scream. And come reelection time, the same smiling faces will be reelected. 

I hope I’m wrong, but I wouldn’t bet on anything changing in the next election.

posted by: sightover | March 6, 2013  5:48pm

This country has a bad habit of dashing a minority’s freedoms to placate a mass of frightened fools.

Be it warrantless wiretaps, Jim Crow, gun control, or what have you: panicked masses tend to vote to restrict or punish “others” when confronted with something beyond their comprehension.

Blue-state liberals hate the idea of gun-toting working class folks, just like Southern Democrats once hated the idea of sharing a lunch room with African Americans. 

Most of these proposals would not have prevented the latest massacre, but they only harm “those people” and allow small-minded bigots to feel that they’ve “done something.”

The sick irony of most pending gun control measures are that they will punish exactly the type of person (lawful gun owner) who tends to shun our morally bankrupt society, a society responsible for madmen like the Newtown murderer.

The message from the political class to the serfs of CT: if lawful gun owners refuse to be part of the problem then our government will make sure they’re part of the solution ... even if that means punitive laws, passed as quickly as possible, that solve nothing. The killer escaped justice, so we’ll just pin this on YOU.

posted by: rankandfile | March 6, 2013  6:13pm

I for one will not vote for anyone who undermines the 2nd amendment by supporting knee-jerk feel-good legislation meant to “do something” rather than being designed to deal with the actual problem.

posted by: lebron | March 6, 2013  8:38pm

In response to “bob8/57”
That’s the rub Bob, as you’ve so deftly paraphrased the “lunatic-fringe” will leave the State, along with hundreds of jobs and up to 1.7 billion (that’s with a B) in State revenue. So Nero can fiddle while Connecticut burns huh? Already the State is so far into the red in debt, Taxes continue to escalate. And with a paltry .01% growth in 2012 existing revenue is projected to be flat at best. We then spend millions on bus-ways and Hospital expansions. And you are willing to chase tax paying companies away. You are truly delusional.
Oh and just a little background on this “lunatic-fringer” I’ve served many tours in our Military and since returning to civilian life I’ve put my experience to use in Emergency Services Units, so I have a little experience with this subject.
Nothing, let me emphasize that again, “Nothing” the Legislature is proposing will do a single thing to make you safe, other than make you feel warm and fuzzy about the evil scary “Assault Rifles and large capacity magazines. So to Bob, I say good Luck with your utopian society.

posted by: sofaman | March 7, 2013  9:07am

Societies that have more restrictive gun laws are more safe.  The US has an out of control murder rate, precisely because of guns.

posted by: dano860 | March 7, 2013  9:15am

Take a look at the poll, the last question (20x) tells it all.
The number of households with a firearm by party affiliation is reported. These are the ones polled, no wonder the results are tipped. Did they select the responders according to firearms ownership?
It shows Republicans that have firearms in the minority, Democrats and Unaffiliated (independents) without firearms in the majority.


That is one slanted poll or the liberals are truly the “sheeple” in this ‘blue’ State.

posted by: Greg | March 7, 2013  10:22am

Sofaman- Back out inner city crime, gun or not, and then where do we stand in relation to other countries? Then look at where the AR’s and high-cap mags that are flying off the shelves are ending up (read: not in the inner city), and see if your assumption holds.

But…we can’t say that because it’s politically insensitive, huh?

posted by: rankandfile | March 7, 2013  12:01pm

sofaman, you sound like the typical liberal, spouting your opinions as if they were “facts”. Violent crimes per 100,000: UK 2,034, US 466, Canada 935, Sweden 1,123. It looks like countries with strong gun control laws are also far more violent.

posted by: lebron | March 7, 2013  12:13pm

Care to cite your statistics? I have one, the Murder rate in the UK is 8 points higher per 1000 citizens that the United States, and they have some of the most restrictive gun ownership laws. I won’t even get into Chicago, 528 people murdered in 2012 with 170 of those School aged children. So again, how is the U.S the Murder Country because of evil guns. Don’t look now but your biased is showing.

posted by: ALD | March 7, 2013  12:25pm

“Societies that have more restrictive gun laws are more safe.  The US has an out of control murder rate, precisely because of guns.”

So if we took all the guns off the streets of Hartford, New Haven, Waterbury, and Bridgeport as well as many other cites in this state, would that make any of us feel safer to walk those same streets with our families after dark? Or in many cases even broad daylight?    Keep in mind all those guns are now gone!!!!  So do you really feel safer???

posted by: Enfield Gets It | March 8, 2013  9:35am

I got polled in this “one-sided - leading poll”.  They (whoever wrote the questions) did EVERYTHING they could to get the answers they were after.  There was no way to answer the questions without leaning in one way - and some of the questions were as if they didn’t even know we had current gun laws.  So, please, don’t even try to believe the “Q” poll as being an accurate presentation of the CT people.  This poll was biased - baloney!!!!!

posted by: sofaman | March 9, 2013  2:02pm

LeBron (and others)

The murder rate is MASSIVELY HIGHER in the U.S. than any other modern society.


Murder Rate:

U.S. 4.2
U.K. 1.2

The U.K. is in fact the most violent in Europe, and it STILL has nothing like the murder rate we suffer from.


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