The Washington Examiner’s Paul Bedard crunched some the new numbers on gun politics from Pew Research and found that almost half the country has a gun in the home. Pew found that 44 percent of all homes have guns, while 51 percent do not. It bucks the trend of other polls, namely CBS News, which found that gun ownership hovered in the mid-30s.
Yes, anti-gun liberals will point out that the majority of households don’t have guns; hence their anti-gun agenda is popular. Nope. The same survey found that 52 percent of Americans prioritize protecting gun rights over new means to control ownership. Moreover, it’s a constitutional right. It’s part of the Bill of Rights, which is immune to public opinion and for good reason.
By this logic of rights being put on a graduated scale based on opinion polls (or levels of participation) to discern whether it should be kept of discarded, the right to peaceful assembly should be on the chopping block since no one really exercises that one.
But getting back to the numbers, the Pew survey also found majority support for most of the Left’s anti-gun agenda. Eighty-one percent support background checks for private and gun show sales; 52 percent support an assault weapons ban; 50 percent back a ban on high-capacity magazines; and 71 percent back a ban on those on terror watch lists from buying guns.
It may be popular. It doesn’t make it right. The assault weapons ban had zero impact reducing gun violence. Private sales between non-family members are incredibly low to the point where it’s not even worth federal action; most private transfers are between family members. Bans on high-capacity magazines don’t stop mass shootings—and using secret government lists, of which there is no due process and the criteria for getting on that list is unknown, is arguably unconstitutional. You lose your gun rights after being convicted of a crime, not based on mere suspicion. There is one area where there could be common ground; 76 percent oppose those who are mentally ill from buying guns. I couldn’t agree more depending on the illness. There is a huge difference between a paranoid schizophrenic and someone with Asperger’s. The legal minefield of making this an efficient system, which disease should prohibit someone from owning guns, and the various privacy issues is worthy of a long debate. Democrats don’t want to have it.
Another interesting nugget in the data is Millennials. The proposals banning so-called assault weapons and high-capacity magazine couldn’t break 50 percent support with this overwhelmingly liberal voting block.