A majority of likely voters in Arizona says current gun laws are not strict enough, according to a new OH Predictive Insights Poll released Thursday, marking a shift in a hot-button issue.
Fifty-four percent of likely Arizona voters said the current laws in the state on the sale and ownership of guns are insufficiently strict, a 6-point rise from May, while those who believe the laws are too strict dropped 2 points, to 4 percent. Of those surveyed, 46 percent said that they or someone in their household owned a gun.
Republican and Democratic support for increased gun control legislation remained relatively consistent since May, with 29 percent and 76 percent, respectively, saying this that gun laws are not strict enough. However, support from independent voters for stricter gun laws shot up by 17 points since May, with 60 percent saying existing laws are too lax.
The survey was conducted after the two mass shootings earlier this month in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, which killed a combined 31 people.
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“The recent spate of gun violence across the country is clearly shifting public opinion,” said Mike Noble, chief of research and managing partner of OH Predictive Insights, a Phoenix-based research company. “In the last three months, the most notable demographic shift was among the coveted Independent voter bloc while Republicans and Democrats saw only a marginal shift.”
The latest poll is welcome news for Democrats, who are hoping to turn gun control into a key issue heading into the 2020 cycle. Arizona is home to one of the most competitive Senate races next year and is also increasingly seen as a presidential battleground.
The OH Predictive Insights poll surveyed 600 likely voters from Aug. 13 to 14 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.