Skip to content

New Here?

New Poll: Amid Covid-19, Gun Safety-Themed Messages are Amongst the Most Effective vs. Trump and Gun Lobby Allies

July 17, 2020

Survey Conducted By Civis Demonstrates Gun Safety is as Effective as Healthcare, Taxes, and Retirement Security

NEW YORK — Today, Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund unveiled results of a new survey of voters across thirteen key battleground states, which tested the electoral impact of potential general election messages against President Trump and gun lobby-allied politicians. The survey found that gun safety-themed messages were among the most impactful at moving voters’ support to Joe Biden, and that messaging focused on the impacts of COVID-19 on America’s gun violence crisis was the second most effective overall at shifting support to Biden.

“Surging gun sales, high unemployment, and home confinement are a dangerous combination, which is why more Americans than ever are looking for candidates who will pass common-sense laws to keep guns away from people who shouldn’t have them,” said John Feinblatt, president of Everytown for Gun Safety. “It should come as no surprise that voters now rank gun safety, which is a life-or-death issue if there ever was one, right up there with healthcare and retirement.”

“Gun safety is now a kitchen table issue in the minds of voters, alongside bread and butter concerns like healthcare, taxes and retirement security,” said Charlie Kelly, senior political advisor for Everytown for Gun Safety. “The pandemic has only strengthened voters’ call for action to address gun violence, and it’s clear gun safety will have a major impact on the presidential contest and races down the ballot.”

The survey, conducted by Civis Analytics, tested the effectiveness of nine potential general election messages spread across two general groupings: “Gold Standards” — Democratic messages around issues like health care, taxes, Social Security, and Medicare; and “COVID/Gun Safety” — messages that highlighted the dual impacts of COVID-19 and gun violence, and the gun lobby.

View the survey here. Key takeaways include:

  • Both sets of messaging were effective at moving voters toward voting for Joe Biden.
  • Messaging that highlighted the impacts COVID-19 has had on gun violence in America, and Republicans’ opposition to background checks on all gun sales, was the second most effective overall, just behind messaging around taxes, and slightly ahead of healthcare/pre-existing conditions and Medicare/Social Security.
  • Messaging that highlighted Republicans’ being supported by the gun lobby, and putting the gun lobby’s interests ahead of the health and safety of Americans, tested in the same range of effectiveness as taxes, healthcare/pre-existing conditions, and Medicare/Social Security.
  • Independent voters and young voters were especially responsive to both sets of messaging, and both sets of messaging performed strongly with suburban women voters.

The survey reached 16,500 voters across the key presidential battlegrounds of Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Wisconsin. Respondents were randomly served either no message (control group), or a message from one of the two lanes. The survey was conducted between May 22 and May 30.

If you're a member of the media, please send inquiries to [email protected]