Could voters in progressive California be losing confidence in gun control as an all-purpose solution to crime? Maybe so.
A new online poll co-sponsored by the University of California Berkeley Institute of Governmental Studies and the Los Angeles Times, both very liberal organizations, reflects support for more restrictions on firearms dropping by four percent from three years ago.
Now, only 56 percent of those surveyed “believe stronger laws restricting the sale and possession of guns help make their communities safer,” down from 60 percent previously, the Times reported about the data compiled from about 6,000 registered voters.
There also appears to be some erosion in support for gun control generally, although it remains to be seen if these relatively small percentages, if they are even valid, represent a trend in the left-leaning state.
“The poll also found that 57% of California voters say it is more important to place greater controls on gun ownership than it is to protect Americans’ rights to own guns under the 2nd Amendment, but that number is down from 64% who felt that way in 2018,” the Times explained.
“I think it’s due in large measure to the increase in crime, especially violent crime,” IGS poll director Mark DiCamillo suggested. “But still, this is a very Democratic and very liberal constituency and gun control laws have traditionally been quite popular among those voters not only here in California but nationwide.”
That notwithstanding, handgun sales in California — a state totally controlled by Democrats — surged nearly 66 percent in 2020 over 2019, while long gun purchases increased by nearly 50 percent, data from the state’s attorney general indicates.
As compared to 2020, shootings in Los Angeles alone have escalated by about 44 percent to date; murders have tragically increased by nearly 30 percent. Across the once Golden State, murders — most of which involve guns — have sadly increased 31 percent this year
There’s an old saying that has various iterations along the lines of that a conservative is a liberal who got mugged.
The rapid decay in California’s quality of life, which includes violent crime, homelessness, open drug abuse, high taxes, the high cost of living, and various COVID-related restrictions on law-abiding citizens, has led to a recall election for Democrat Gov. Gavin Newsom which is scheduled for September 14. According to some of the latest election poll data, the pro-and con-recall constituency is neck in neck.
The prevailing environment has also prompted many residents to permanently relocate to states such as Arizona, Nevada, Tennessee, Texas, or Florida.
The relocation wave is such that Texas is currently projected to be our most populous state soon. Even though those leaving California are, in theory, those most opposed to California’s current ruleset and direction, the shift in attitude for the state was still substantial.
It will be telling if this trend continues, because even another year of this would result in gun control support slipping into the minority. Such an event would be a shocking turn of trend for the deeply blue state, and a win for freedom loving Californians.