Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Poll: PA voters support assault weapons, high cap magazine ban, same-sex marriage

Pennsylvania voters support stricter gun-control laws, including a national ban on sales of assault weapons and high capacity magazines, as well as universal background checks.

Poll: PA voters support assault weapons, high cap magazine ban, same-sex marriage

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This image made from video provided by NBC´s "Meet the Press" shows host David Gregory holding what he described as a high-capacity ammunition magazine during the taping of the Sunday, Dec. 23, 2012 program. He was interviewing National Rifle Association executive vice president Wayne LaPierre and used the magazine as a prop while discussing gun control. Gregory won´t face charges for possession of a high-capacity magazine D.C. prosecutors announced Friday, Jan. 11, 2013 saying criminal charges wouldn´t serve the public´s best interests. (AP Photo/Meet the Press)
This image made from video provided by NBC's "Meet the Press" shows host David Gregory holding what he described as a high-capacity ammunition magazine during the taping of the Sunday, Dec. 23, 2012 program. He was interviewing National Rifle Association executive vice president Wayne LaPierre and used the magazine as a prop while discussing gun control. Gregory won't face charges for possession of a high-capacity magazine D.C. prosecutors announced Friday, Jan. 11, 2013 saying criminal charges wouldn't serve the public's best interests. (AP Photo/Meet the Press)

Pennsylvania voters support stricter gun-control laws, including a national ban on sales of assault weapons and high capacity magazines, as well as universal background checks, a new poll found.

Voters said they approved (60-37 percent) of a national ban on the sale of assault weapons and supported (59-39 percent) a ban on high capacity magazines, according to a Quinnipiac University poll taken one month after the massacre of 20 children and six adults at a school in Newtown, Conn. 

By an overwhelming (95-5 percent) margin, voters supported requiring background checks for all gun buyers.

Fifty-seven percent of Pennsylvania voters agreed that gun-control laws should be stricter, while 4 percent say less strict and 35 percent say keep state laws as they are. National gun-control laws should be stricter, 60 percent of statewide voters said.

“Keystone State voters, especially voters in urban areas, seem to have had enough of gun violence," said Tim Malloy, assistant director of Quinnipiac University Polling Institute. "By large margins, voters don’t think assault weapons belong in the hands of any gun owner. Restrict the firepower of assault weapons or ban them entirely Pennsylvanians say."

Pennsylvania voters were divided on same-sex marriage, with 47 percent in favor and 43 percent opposed. Support was much higher among voters 18 to 34 years old (68-25 percent) compared with voters 35 to 54 who approved it by a 48 -41 percent margin. Voters over 55 were opposed to gay marriage 53 - 39 percent.

Support for gay marriage was higher (50 – 40 percent among women) while men disapproved 46-44 percent. 

Most voters (37 percent) cited the economy as the most important problem facing the state when asked an open-ended question on the top issue.  Another 10 percent list education and only 8 percent list taxes, followed by 7 percent each for the state budget and for politicians.

Pennsylvania voters were divided on Gov. Corbett's expected proposal to raise the tax on gas stations to pay for road and bridge repair, with 45 percent supporting and 47 percent opposing the $2 billion tax.

A total of 82 percent of voters said they were “very concerned” or “somewhat concerned” that the cost of the new tax would be passed on to them, while 18 percent are “not too concerned” or “not concerned at all.”

The poll surveyed 1,221 registered voters between January 22 – 27 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.8 percentage points.  Live interviewers called both land lines and cell phones.

 

Click herefor Philly.com's politics page.

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Commonwealth Confidential gives you regularly updated coverage of the state legislature, the governor and the workings of the state bureaucracy. It is written by Angela Couloumbis in the Inquirer's Harrisburg bureau, based in the statehouse, and by the newspaper's far-flung campaign reporters.



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