Recent political surveys indicate that the American public as a whole is strongly in favor of the right to bear arms—and may punish anti-gun candidates in the elections. A Gallup poll revealed that 56 percent of Americans think the nation would be safer if more people carried legal concealed firearms. In line with that finding, a Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll showed that 52 percent of Americans think the Democratic Party—all of whose viable presidential candidates are strongly anti-gun—are “outside the mainstream” on gun issues.
Will candidates’ opposition to gun rights cost them the election? Perhaps: Gallup also indicated that 26 percent of Americans will only vote for a candidate who shares their views on guns, while 54 percent see gun rights as one out of several important issues. It remains to be seen whether a shared commitment to gun control will sink the Democratic ship.