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Handgun possession ban opposed by most Americans, poll says

April 8, 2009 |  1:25 pm


Guns and violence ... a mass shooting in New York ... a savage war among drug cartel factions and between the cartels and police in Mexico (utilizing weaponry partially obtained in the U.S) ... a new U.S. administration that's perceived as less supportive of Second Amendment rights....

So many issues and concerns, but will all or any of this lead to stricter gun-control measures for U.S. citizens?

Perhaps, and time will tell. But according to a new Gallup Poll, conducted before last week's massacre at an immigrant center in Binghamton, N.Y., only 29% of Americans believe possession of handguns by private citizens should be banned.

It's the smallest percentage favoring a handgun ban since Gallup first posed the question nearly 50 years ago. The question: "Do you think there should or should not be a law that would ban the possession of handguns, except by police and other authorized persons?"

Perhaps not surprisingly, the poll also found that women are more in favor of stricter gun-control measures than men, and that Democrats are more supportive than Republicans and Independents.

-- Pete Thomas

Photo: A .50-caliber Magnum revolver from Smith & Wesson had gun control groups in arms when it arrived on the market several years ago. Credit: Nathan Martin / Associated Press