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Wednesday, January 23, 2013

New Poll: Washington State Voters Overwhelmingly Support Stricter Gun Laws

Posted by on Wed, Jan 23, 2013 at 8:58 AM

A new poll (PDF) released yesterday by Washington CeaseFire, a statewide organization dedicated to reducing gun violence, finds 76 percent support for tighter gun laws.

The poll found 66 percent support (54 percent strongly) for banning semi-automatic assault weapons, 66 percent support (55 percent strongly) for limiting ammunition clips to 10 bullets, and an overwhelming 87 percent support (76 percent strongly) for closing the "gun show loophole." Respondents also support mandatory penalties for youth firearm possession (69 percent) and tighter controls on issuing concealed weapons permits (66 percent).

The poll of 600 registered Washington State voters was conducted January 3-7 by Alison Peters Consulting, and has +/- 4 percent margin error.

So what does this mean? In Olympia, not all that much. Thanks to Rodney Tom's personal ambition, the Senate Law and Justice Committee has been put in the hands of NRA-endorsed Senator Mike Padden (R-Spokane Valley), and with it the ability to block all proposed gun control legislation. Of the reforms tested in the poll, the only one with a chance of making it through Padden's committee this session is a bill imposing mandatory penalties for youth firearm possession. Tough on crime! Yay! Even Republicans can get behind that.

Under current state law, a mandatory penalty is not triggered until the fifth youth firearm offense. A politically pragmatic Washington CeaseFire has made this one doable reform its legislative priority for the current session.

But where this poll might have a bit more impact is in the coming debate in the US House over President Obama's proposed new gun regulations. In past decades, Washington Democrats outside of largely urban districts have been loathe to show support for gun control, but this poll might help stiffen their resolve. Perhaps even Republican Dave Reichert might even be swayed, coming as he does from a profession with a long history of strongly supporting tighter gun laws (I vaguely remember him telling us that he was once a sheriff or something).

Either way, with a state poll like this matching national polls on the issue, it's now absolutely clear that local voters want legislative action. Whether our lawmakers will have the NRA-bucking balls to give it to us remains to be seen.

 

Comments (34) RSS

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1
I could be wrong, but I believe the current mental health standard for a CC permit is having been involuntarily hospitalized for 14 days. Probably made sense in the 50's when it was written, not so much now. Might be time to update that.
Posted by Chris Jury http://www.thebismarck.net on January 23, 2013 at 9:40 AM · Report this
2
Washington CeaseFire probably isn't biased at all.
Posted by NancyBalls on January 23, 2013 at 9:40 AM · Report this
3
Surely not every initiative needs to come from Tim Eyman.
Posted by DJSauvage on January 23, 2013 at 9:47 AM · Report this
Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn 4
@2

I'm sure thinking that will make lots of people feel better, and what matters most is how you feel. Not whether you win. Ask Mitt Romney.
Posted by Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn http://youtu.be/zu-akdyxpUc on January 23, 2013 at 9:48 AM · Report this
5
Excellent! Put it on the ballot, then. Call it "Son of I-676." See if it does better than I-676, the mild gun control measure that lost, 71% to 29%. Come on, Goldy, let's see how well the "progressives" do the second time around.
Posted by Mister G on January 23, 2013 at 9:55 AM · Report this
6
What a shitty poll. "If we held a gun to your head that held over 100 bullets and had a grenade launcher attached would you support a ban on it?"

Reads like a Fox News Poll. Not helping bring about sensible change. Just more noise among pro and anti gun rants that seems to be dominating what should be a rational conversation.
Posted by Bean on January 23, 2013 at 10:00 AM · Report this
Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn 7
@6

You too?

Ok then. Poll bias it is. Ignore the polls, they're all biased. Instead, keep repeating the slogans. You can't define an assault weapon. Guns don't kill people. Bad guy with a gun, good guy with a gun.

The polls say that's failing, but we don't believe the polls. Stick to your guns and never shift an inch.
Posted by Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn http://youtu.be/zu-akdyxpUc on January 23, 2013 at 10:07 AM · Report this
Ziggity 8
@2 - Yeah, they probably are, but I'm sure Allison Peters Consulting isn't biased, or they wouldn't get work. Nor is Public Polling Policy, who conducted the national poll linked in the post.

Do you have, I don't know . . . evidence? Some shred? Anything?
Posted by Ziggity on January 23, 2013 at 10:08 AM · Report this
9
@7, you entirely miss my point.
Posted by Bean on January 23, 2013 at 10:22 AM · Report this
Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn 10
@9

I do see your point, and the facts contradict it. What you call "more noise" is in fact a clear shift in the public's thinking. This poll is entirely in line with national polls showing that the NRA's rhetoric isn't working. If anything, it's pushing them further outside the mainstream.

Accusing groups like CeaseFire of not being rational is part of the classic tough guy "let me mansplain it to you" line of the NRA. Polls say it's failing too.

What I'm interested in is trying to scare up any trace of dynamic thinking among those who defend the status quo of unrestricted access to 30 round magazines and unregulated private (and "private" ha ha) sales. I can't, no matter how much I prod, get a shred of originality out of any of these guys. They're stuck really hard in a loop and they can't fathom the world around them changing, so they stick to denial.
Posted by Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn http://youtu.be/zu-akdyxpUc on January 23, 2013 at 10:29 AM · Report this
11
There's a battle going on to control the narrative, that's for sure.
Posted by NancyBalls on January 23, 2013 at 10:36 AM · Report this
Big Sven 12
Just want to point out, again, that the majority of us gun owners support the President's proposed reforms (bottom part of article):

http://abcnews.go.com/m/blogEntry?id=182…

Also, fuck the NRA.
Posted by Big Sven http://onedatapoint.blogspot.com/ on January 23, 2013 at 10:45 AM · Report this
raku 13
Has anyone thought of using Kickstarter for popular initiatives like gun control that have popular support but don't have big money backers bc they won't make anyone richer? Seems like it could transform the initiative process... The Internet doesn't care for "Donate" buttons on websites like it does with Kickstarter.
Posted by raku on January 23, 2013 at 10:53 AM · Report this
Will in Seattle 14
What @12 said.

No sane hunter uses automatic weapons to hunt.
Posted by Will in Seattle http://www.facebook.com/WillSeattle on January 23, 2013 at 10:56 AM · Report this
Goldy 15
@14
No sane hunter uses automatic weapons to hunt.


They do if they're hunting people.
Posted by Goldy on January 23, 2013 at 11:05 AM · Report this
Goldy 16
@6 Explain to me the polling bias in this question:

12. There is no law limiting certain high-capacity magazine clips that hold in excess of 10 bullets. In fact, eight states have already banned these types of clips. After hearing this, do you support a law to limit ammunition clips on guns to 10 bullets


Seems like a pretty straight forward statement of facts followed by a straight forward question to me.
Posted by Goldy on January 23, 2013 at 11:12 AM · Report this
seatackled 17
@15 Depends on your definition of sane.
Posted by seatackled on January 23, 2013 at 11:16 AM · Report this
seatackled 18
@16

It's biased because it doesn't acknowledge that you might be at an airport with a prissy Andy Sipowicz during a snowstorm when armed mercenaries take over the control tower and threaten to crash your wife's and Chief O'Brien's planes in a ploy to free a Latin American dictator, and the only hope of preventing this is if you have more than 10 bullets in your clip. After hearing this, you support a law to limit ammunition clips on guns to 10 bullets?
Posted by seatackled on January 23, 2013 at 11:28 AM · Report this
19
Define "assault weapon" plzthxbai
Posted by Tyro on January 23, 2013 at 11:34 AM · Report this
Theodore Gorath 20
@16: Actually, that is a baised question, because before it asks you if you support "X," it informs you that lots of people already do support "X."

It is biased in that it steers the person answering to answer along the lines of the eight states mentioned. Subtle, but it is there.

This is why phone polls are always suspect. It is very easy to get any answer based on how you phrase the question. If you ask, "should illegal immigrants be given access to public schools on the taxpayer's dime?" people usually say "no," but if you ask, "should illegal immigrants be barred from public education?" people almost always answer "no" as well.

Same question, different phrasing, different answers. It's easy.
Posted by Theodore Gorath on January 23, 2013 at 11:38 AM · Report this
21
600 registered voters were polled... I do not believe one can claim more then half the state wants stricter rules with only polling 600 people. Nice try
Posted by shrubby 77 on January 23, 2013 at 11:41 AM · Report this
22
@19
An "assault weapon" is any rifle, carbine or pistol that is:
a. semi-automatic
b. has a removable magazine
c. AND THIS IS THE IMPORTANT ONE - has certain cosmetic features that do no have an effect on its usage in 99.99% of crimes committed.

A gun that is NOT an "assault weapon" is any rifle, carbine or pistol that:
a. is semi-automatic
b. has a removable magazine
c. does NOT have certain cosmetic features.

Which brings the discussion around, again, to what would be regulated/banned (and grandfathered in) rather than whether X% people support regulating A, B or C.
Posted by fairly.unbalanced on January 23, 2013 at 11:45 AM · Report this
Will in Seattle 23
@15 we call those either criminals or the military.

I belonged to the latter. You?
Posted by Will in Seattle http://www.facebook.com/WillSeattle on January 23, 2013 at 11:47 AM · Report this
Will in Seattle 24
@22 how many angels dance on the head of a firing pin?
Posted by Will in Seattle http://www.facebook.com/WillSeattle on January 23, 2013 at 11:48 AM · Report this
Boring Dad is Boring 25
I sincerely hope that polls like this "stiffen the resolve" of some members of congress, and that they get the opportunity to vote on a full slate of federal gun ban options. It will be an excellent way to find out whether the 2nd amendment crowd is truly now a paper tiger.

@14: Automatic weapons are very rare in private hands and have been illegal to produce or import since 1986 - are you wanting to make them EVEN MOAR illegal?
Posted by Boring Dad is Boring on January 23, 2013 at 11:52 AM · Report this
26
@24
So nice to see that, once again, you are interested in furthering the discussion rather than simply spewing uninformed comments.

Automatic weapons are extremely rare and highly regulated and crimes committed with them are even rarer.
Which just illustrates my point that what to ban/regulate should be the first discussion.
Posted by fairly.unbalanced on January 23, 2013 at 12:06 PM · Report this
Christampa 27
Haha, a lesson in "furthering the conversation" from the "You don't know the names of brown people who were killed and therefore cannot legitimately speak about this topic" guy.

In a world where everybody has the right to tell WiS off for being an annoying dumbfuck (this world), you can go fuck yourself.
Posted by Christampa on January 23, 2013 at 12:59 PM · Report this
28
#14, automatic weapons are illegal. Of course, the typical Seattle "progressive" doesn't know this because the typical Seattle "progressive" remains aggressively ignorant about anything having to do with guns. Which is why, in the end, the Seattle "progressives" will lose this fight.
Posted by Mister G on January 23, 2013 at 7:22 PM · Report this
29
#21, as long as the sample is properly randomized and the questions are neutral, 600 is enough. But this would not describe Ceasefire's poll. On one hand, they oversampled landlines, which skewed it conservative. But they asked a bunch of leading questions, which made the answers to those questions meaningless.
Posted by Mister G on January 23, 2013 at 9:03 PM · Report this
Christampa 30
@29 - Tell us more about your expertise in polls
Posted by Christampa on January 23, 2013 at 9:54 PM · Report this
31
If you don't like guns, don't own one. If you like guns, own one. I like, so I do, but if you don't, there's nothing wrong with it. Just don't try to force your views onto me, with ignorance or slander. If I remember correctly, there were alot of Freedoms and Rights I vowed to protect when I served my country, whether I agreed with them or not. I don't remember only vowing to protect the ones I liked, or did I miss something? Ceasefire poll percentages sure seem to vary depending on what they want you to hear.
Posted by Crich on January 24, 2013 at 12:26 AM · Report this
32 Comment Pulled (Spam) Comment Policy
33
Wow. That is just worst piece of shit journalism I have ever read. You can have it. The Stranger sucks ass, and has since the death the Seattle music scene. BAH!
Posted by 2ASup on March 29, 2013 at 5:25 PM · Report this
34 Comment Pulled (Spam) Comment Policy

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