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New Pre-Election Polling in North Carolina Finds that Gun Safety is a Winning Issue in Key Races Across NC, Where Everytown Spent Nearly $6.5 Million

November 2, 2020

New Poll Found That the Majority of Likely North Carolina Voters View Gun Safety as An Important Issue Impacting Their Vote, and That Gun Safety Messaging Deployed by Everytown Has Been Highly Impactful

Everytown for Gun Safety Victory Fund and Action Fund Invested Nearly $6.5 Million in North Carolina This Cycle, Targeting Statewide Races, the U.S. Senate Contest, and state House and state Senate Races to Determine Control of the State Legislature

Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action Volunteers Have Made Nearly 100,000 Calls And Texts in North Carolina

RALEIGH, N.C. — Today, Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund and Victory Fund (“Everytown”) unveiled new polling of North Carolina voters, which found, just days before Election Day, that the vast majority of likely voters, including suburban women, view gun safety as an important issue impacting their vote heading into Election Day. The survey also found that gun safety-themed messaging, deployed by Everytown in its paid advertising campaigns in North Carolina, has been highly effective at impacting North Carolina voters.

Everytown for Gun Safety Victory Fund and Action Fund have invested nearly $6.5 million in North Carolina this cycle in order to elect gun sense champions up and down the ballot, including: Governor Roy Cooper, Yvonne Holley Lewis for Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General Josh Stein; Cal Cunningham for U.S. Senate; and gun sense candidates running for the state legislature in an effort to elect gun sense majorities to both chambers of the General Assembly.

“Gun safety is an issue that touches voters on a personal level, and it can cut through the Trump-created chaos and shape their choices at the ballot box,” said John Feinblatt, president of Everytown for Gun Safety. “This newest polling gives us a hint of what’s already happening at the polls: North Carolina voters turning out in force to reject lawmakers who have blocked progress for so long.”

“Once again the data shows that gun safety is a triple threat – it mobilizes, persuades, and has become a litmus test issue for voters across battleground states,” said Charlie Kelly, senior political advisor for Everytown for Gun Safety. “Our messaging this cycle is effective because people are tired of inaction on gun violence and politicians in the pocket of the gun lobby.”

“After Republican lawmakers refused to take action on gun safety, we knew we’d do whatever it takes to vote them out,” said Jack Sinclair, volunteer with the North Carolina chapter of Moms Demand Action. “From this poll, and from the thousands of conversations I and fellow volunteers have had with North Carolina voters, one thing is clear – that inaction is unacceptable.” 

The poll, conducted by Schoen Cooperman Research, surveyed 475 North Carolina voters. Findings include: 

  • 88% of likely voters — including 88% of suburban women — say a candidate’s position on gun policy is important in deciding who to vote for;
  • By a 5:1 margin, North Carolina voters believe their state’s gun laws should be made stronger, not less strong;
  • 88% of North Carolina voters believe the need for background checks on all gun sales is more important now, during the pandemic, than a year ago; 
  • 61% of suburban women and 57% of all likely voters say that an endorsement by the NRA makes no difference to their vote or makes them less likely to vote for a candidate who is endorsed by the NRA. 
  • Messaging deployed by Everytown is highly persuasive and effectively improves the horserace for Democrats in races up and down the ballot.

Everytown for Gun Safety Victory Fund and Action Fund spent nearly $6.5 million in North Carolina during this election cycle, including:

U.S. Senate:

  • Nearly $4 million to support Cal Cunningham against Senator Thom Tillis, the top beneficiary of NRA money among all Senators up for reelection this election cycle. 
  • Everytown ran television ads on broadcast and cable television, totaling 8,450 GRPs across the Raleigh, Charlotte, Greensboro, Norfolk, Wilmington, Myrtle Beach, and Greenville media markets, backed by digital advertising statewide. The ads highlighted how Tillis has put special interests like the gun lobby and insurance industry ahead of the safety and security of North Carolina families.

State Legislature:

  • More than $2.1 million to elect gun sense majorities to both chambers of the North Carolina General Assembly. As part of this effort, Everytown targeted 10 state House districts (HD-01; HD-09; HD-20; HD-45; HD-59; HD-63; HD-74; HD-82; HD-83; HD-98) and four state Senate districts (SD-01; SD-11; SD-24; SD-31) with candidate-specific digital and direct mail campaigns. 
  • By Election Day, Everytown’s digital ads will have been seen nearly 42 million times, and its direct mail will have reached nearly 220,000 households.


  • $100,000 contributed to the Democratic Governors Association to support Governor Roy Cooper.
  • $50,000 contributed to the Democratic Lieutenant Governors Association to support Yvonne Holley Lewis for Lieutenant Governor.
  • $50,000 contributed to the Democratic Attorneys General Association to support Attorney General Josh Stein.

Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action volunteers have also made nearly 100,000 calls and texts to North Carolina voters to support gun sense candidates across the state. 

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