Majorities Back Stronger Gun Control Measures, Poll Finds

Photograph by Karen Bleier/AFP via Getty Images

A wall of semi-automatic rifles at the National Rifle Association (NRA) Annual Meetings and Exhibits in St. Louis, Missouri.

A majority of Americans favor stronger gun control measures, according to an ABC News/Washington Post survey out today following the death of 27 people in the Newton, Connecticut, shootings. Fifty-four percent of respondents supported stricter gun control laws while 43 percent said they opposed new measures that curbed gun rights.

When asked about banning ammunition clips that contain more than 10 bullets, 59 percent supported the idea, while 38 percent opposed it. In addition, 52 percent backed a ban on semiautomatic handguns, with 44 percent in opposition.

Majorities have consistently supported gun control measures going back to 1993, when 60 percent were in favor of stronger laws, according to surveys. That hasn’t spurred Congress to act in recent years.

And even if gun control measures enjoy majority support, 49 percent of respondents to today’s poll said the best way to reduce gun violence was by enforcing existing laws, compared with 32 percent who called for new legislation.

The survey of 602 adults was conducted Dec. 14-16 and had a margin of error of plus or minus 4.5 percentage points.

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