Poll: Arizona Voters Support Tougher Gun Laws By 8:1 Margin

By Scott Bourque
Published: Saturday, February 8, 2020 - 5:05am
Updated: Saturday, February 8, 2020 - 10:00pm

New polling data released by the research firm Global Strategy Group suggests that a majority of Arizona voters supported stronger gun laws in the state.

The poll, which was commissioned by Democratic presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg’s group Everytown For Gun Safety found that, statewide, 50% of voters supported stronger gun laws, while only 6% of voters felt gun laws should be less strong — an 8:1 margin.

In districts where Republicans outnumbered Democrats by at least 14 points, voters still supported stronger gun laws by a 6:1 margin. 

Arizona consistently ranks first in Guns & Ammo magazine’s annual list of best states for gun owners for its concealed carry laws, use of force laws, and lack of restrictions on firearms and accessories.

Domestic Violence

The most consensus came on the issue of blocking domestic abusers from owning weapons, and requiring offenders to surrender their firearms to law enforcement.

Ninety percent of respondents said they supported policies requiring domestic abusers to turn over their firearms to law enforcement, while 89% strongly supported blocking domestic abusers from owning any guns.

“A majority of intimate partner homicides in Arizona are committed with a gun,” said Jessica Manos, a volunteer with Moms Demand Action, a group that seeks to reform gun laws. “What we’re focused on this year is a domestic violence bill, that will disarm domestic abusers when they’re subject to a final order of protection, and not only make it so they can’t purchase weapons, but also that they’d have to surrender the ones that they have.”

Currently, House Bill 2543 and Senate Bill 1165 are making their way through the Arizona State Legislature. Both bills would require courts to order domestic violence offenders to surrender their firearms to law enforcement or a federally licensed dealer within 24 hours of sentencing.

Universal Background Checks

The survey found that requiring background checks ranked higher than immigration, jobs, education, the environment and even abortion in the minds of Arizona voters.

57 percent of voters polled said they agreed with requiring background checks on all gun sales, and would never vote for a candidate with whom they disagreed on that position. Nearly three quarters of undecided voters and 58% of independent voters felt the same way.

Manos says universal background checks are designed to balance the rights of gun owners with the realities of gun violence.

“No law-abiding gun owner will lose their gun rights over this,” she said. “This should be something that we can agree on because it’s a good way to keep our community safe while still protecting the gun rights of law abiding citizens.”

More than two-thirds of voters polled said they would be less likely to support a candidate who opposes background checks on all gun sales, including those sold online and at gun shows.

Red Flag Laws

In 2018, Gov. Doug Ducey called for legislation to allow law enforcement to temporarily remove guns from people deemed a danger to themselves or others by a court. The effort failed in the state Legislature.

After the August 2019 shootings in El Paso and Dayton, Ohio that left a combined 32 people dead, Ducey again called on the state Legislature to enact similar legislation, and again the effort failed.

But 79% of voters — and 90% of suburban women — in the poll said they support enacting so-called “red flag” laws. A small majority (57%) of voters and two-thirds of independents said they were less likely to vote for a candidate who opposes red flag laws.

Poll Methodology

Global Strategy Group conducted an online survey of 622 likely voters in Arizona from Jan. 2 to Jan. 12, 2020. Three-hundred-forty-two of the voters came from “battleground districts,” where registered Republicans outnumbered registered Democrats by at least 14 points. The survey had a margin of error of +/- 3.9%