Just 27 Percent of Americans Say the 1994 Federal Assault Weapons Ban Would Have Helped Avoid the Sandy Hook Shooting

3a00graphb 600x400 Just 27 Percent of Americans Say the 1994 Federal Assault Weapons Ban Would Have Helped Avoid the Sandy Hook Shooting

In the wake of the Sandy Hook school shooting, both President
Obama and Sen. Diane Feinstein (D-CA) have unveiled proposals to ban assault
weapons in the absence of the since-expired 1994 assault weapons
ban. Although 44 percent of Americans favor banning assault
weapons, according to the most recent Reason-Rupe
poll, only 27 percent believe it would have helped avoid the
Newtown tragedy. Nevertheless, belief that the expired federal ban
could have prevented the shooting does bolster support for renewed
efforts to ban assault weapons.The Huffington Post reports Connecticut
has a state assault weapons ban modeled after the now expired 1994
federal ban. Despite the ban, Connecticut law enforcement has
reported Newtown shooter Adam Lanza’s weapons were
still legal in
the state. Taken together, it seems unlikely that had the 1994
federal ban still been in effect it could have prevented the
Newtown school shooting.Among the 27 percent who thought the 1994 federal ban could have
prevented the shooting, 72 percent were under the impression the
law would have impeded Lanza from obtaining the firearms used. This
helps explain why 77 percent of these Americans support renewed
efforts to ban assault weapons nationally, but 18 percent still
support private ownership of assault weapons. Those who believe the
expired ban could have prevented the shooting are also
significantly less likely to posses a firearm (30 percent), while
68 percent do not.In contrast among those who do not believe the expired ban would
have prevented the shooting, 66 percent believe Americans should be
permitted to own assault weapons while 30 percent believe they
should be prohibited. These households were significantly more
likely to own a firearm (48 percent) while 47 percent do not.To be clear, not all Americans who favor an assault weapons ban
today think the previous ban could have prevented the Newtown
tragedy. While 48 of assault weapons ban supporters believe the
previous ban could have prevented the shooting, 45 percent
disagree. Only 10 percent assault weapons ban opponents believe the
expired ban could have prevented the shooting.In sum, the perception the 1994 federal assault weapons ban
could have prevented the Newtown massacre does explain a
significant portion, although not all, of the support for a new
ban.

Taken from:

Just 27 Percent of Americans Say the 1994 Federal Assault Weapons Ban Would Have Helped Avoid the Sandy Hook Shooting

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