Voters Agree -- Individuals Have Right to Bear Arms
by Zogby International
A wide majority of American voters (75%) agree with the Justice Department’s position that the Second Amendment guarantees the right of individuals to keep and bear arms. Just over a fifth (22%) disagree with the Justice Department, while four percent are unsure. This result follows a Supreme Court brief filed in early May in which the Justice Department stated its interpretation of the Second Amendment that individuals have the right to bear arms.
Since 1973, the department has argued that the Second Amendment protects only gun ownership by state militias, not individuals. Zogby International interviewed 1,015 likely voters chosen at random nationwide on behalf of the Second Amendment Foundation, an educational and legal defense organization that works to protect the civil rights of firearms owners.
All calls were made from Zogby International headquarters in Utica, New York, from Tuesday, May 28 to Thursday, May 30, 2002. The survey has a margin of sampling error of +/- 3.2%. Republicans (84%) were most likely to agree with the Justice Department’s position. Residents of the South and the Central/Great Lakes, and West (79% average) as well as respondents 18-24 years old (82%) were also more likely to agree. Majorities of Democrats (65%), Easterners (60%), respondents earning $75,000+ annually (70%) and those 65 years or older (65%) also agreed with the Justice Department.
“Even among Democrats, senior citizens and the middle class, large majorities do not accept the so-called ‘collective right’ theory promoted by the most ardent gun grabbers,” says Alan Gottlieb, founder of the Second Amendment Foundation. “This poll indicates that anti-gunners are not even in-step with their traditional core groups.”
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