Why Presidential Candidates Took on the NRA in the Debates

Democratic presidential candidates take strong gun safety stances during debates.

New polling from GSG shows candidates’ positions on guns will be a deciding factor when Democratic primary voters head to the polls in 2020.

Over the past five years, GSG has done more research on gun safety than any other firm – for candidates and campaigns as well as non-profit organizations. We’ve been at the forefront as guns have gone from the so-called “third rail of politics” to a major issue – one that no candidate can ignore.

Over the last couple of nights, we’ve watched as Democratic presidential candidates have embraced and prioritized common sense gun laws that can make a difference. And our recent research of Democratic primary voters in early states and Super Tuesday states on behalf of Giffords demonstrates why.

Democratic primary voters always prefer a candidate who prioritizes gun violence prevention as part of their platform over one who doesn’t, regardless of the candidate’s ideological lean on other issues. When voters are presented with two profiles for hypothetical candidates – one that includes mention of the candidate will “take on the NRA to protect kids and communities from gun violence” along with a series of other issues and one that doesn’t – they always prefer the candidate who prioritizes gun violence prevention.

An overwhelming majority of Democratic primary voters say a candidate’s position on gun violence prevention is the key litmus test of 2020.

Further, when it comes to the general election against Donald Trump, 71% of voters say being pro-gun safety will win the candidate more support – not less.

Read the full analysis here: June 2019 GSG Study – Gun Violence Prevention