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Amid a Series of Mass Shootings in the U.S., Gun Policy Remains Deeply Divisive

“In an era marked by deep divisions between Republicans and Democrats, few issues are as politically polarizing as gun policy. While a few specific policy proposals continue to garner bipartisan support, the partisan divisions on other proposals – and even on whether gun violence is a serious national problem – have grown wider over the last few years. Today, just over half of Americans (53%) say gun laws should be stricter than they currently are, a view held by 81% of Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents but just 20% of Republicans and Republican leaners. Similarly, while nearly three-quarters of Democrats (73%) say making it harder to legally obtain guns would lead to fewer mass shootings, only 20% of Republicans say this, with most (65%) saying this would have no effect. The new national survey by Pew Research Center, conducted from April 5-11, 2021 among 5,109 adults, finds that 73% of Democrats consider gun violence to be a very big problem for the country today, compared with just 18% of Republicans who say the same. The current partisan gap on this question is 11-percentage-points wider than in 2018 and 19 points wider than in 2016…”

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