82 Percent Of Americans Support Universal Background Checks For Firearm Sales

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There is yet another new round of polling available showing the very high levels of support for implementing universal background checks for gun purchases, which currently are required for sales from federally licensed dealers but otherwise are subject to a patchwork of guidelines variously established by individual states.

The survey data is from YouGov, which conducted the poll in association with the magazine The Economist and found that 82 percent of overall respondents supported the implementation of universal background checks covering both private gun sales and those through federally licensed dealers. A full 62 percent of participants said they strongly supported such universal checks, while an additional 20 percent said they were “somewhat” in favor of the idea. Only a total of 14 percent of respondents either strongly or somewhat opposed that expansion of background checks for gun purchases. Among Republicans, the portion in opposition reached only 17 percent, and even among those identified as conservative, opposition still didn’t even reach one-fourth of the total.

Among those identified as having voted for Trump in the 2020 election, 74 percent either strongly or somewhat supported that expansion of background checks. Yet, Republicans like Sen. Ted Cruz (Texas) and his ideological allies remain resistant, focusing either on the at least tangentially relevant aim of better enforcing the rules for background checks already in place or going completely off the metaphorical rails and ranting incessantly about doors, as though the solution to school shootings is to treat places of education like military installations where entry and exit are sharply controlled to the point of having just a single means of access (which obviously wouldn’t be very practical or even safe).