With record gun sales this year, it should be no surprise that when asked about their priorities for Biden’s first 100 days as president, voters ranked gun control at the bottom. On a list of 25 potential policy changes, “legislation to restrict gun ownership” is near the lowest quintile, ranked #20. As President-elect Joe Biden is no doubt under heavy pressure from the well-funded gun control groups, it is important for him to understand the role of firearm freedoms in the United States
The top priorities are also not surprising. Controlling COVID-19 spread (69 percent of voters), vaccine distribution plans (67 percent) and COVID-19 relief legislation (66 percent) swept the top three spots. But with gun control picked as a priority by less than a quarter of voters (23 percent), other priorities also topped this misguided direction. Everything from health care reform legislation (43 percent) to climate change (33 percent) to immigration policies (27 percent) ranked above the irrational restrictions on the Constitutional rights to keep and bear arms.
The survey also asked about voters who they trust more to handle gun policy in Congress. Out of the 1,992 registered voters, the answer was split roughly in half, right down party lines.
The low ranking of gun control extends beyond what voters want to see in a Biden administration’s first 100 days. When asked how important of a priority various policies should be for Congress, voters expressed that other policy areas such as addressing COVID, stimulus, climate change and protecting “Dreamers,” or young people who were brought to the U.S. illegally as children, from deportation.
This isn’t surprising. With a record-shattering 19.1 million background checks conducted for the sale of a firearm so far this year, Americans are taking ownership of their gun rights. Layering on gun control laws isn’t what voters are looking for.
Elizabeth McGuigan is Director of Legislative and Policy Research at the National Shooting Sports Foundation.