Where Does That “90% of Americans Support Expanded Background Checks” Come From?

(courtesy quinnipiac.edu)

TTAG reader Jeff F writes:

A lot of people don’t understand where this “90 percent of Americans support expanded background checks” number came from. It’s been drawn from a Quinnipiac study. If you want to know the truth about this statistic, pay special attention to the wording in question 31, and also the never-ever-ever mentioned question 35 from the SAME study. It’s pretty funny. Here’s question 31 . . .

31. Do you favor or oppose requiring background checks for all gun buyers?” Over 90% said they favor background checks.

Notice how the question never uses the word ”expanded” in any way, or asks the respondent if they support the new gun control laws. Quite a stretch to interpret an affirmative answer to this question to mean support for the new laws and “Expanded” background checks, right?

Question 35 is also pretty cool, in that it seems to have been magically stricken from the minds of the media and the White House.

Here’s question 35:

35. Who do you think better reflects your views on guns, President Obama or the National Rifle Association?

45% said the NRA, 44% said Obama.

More respondents agree with the NRA than with Obama. This would seem to indicate that while people like background checks, they do NOT like the new idea of “expanded” background checks.

Dishonesty by our adversaries, and yet I have not yet seen anyone take them to task on it. Their own study contradicts their statements, and we don’t seem to be using this against them. Why?! The same study with the same people, yet question 31 is trumpeted to the heavens by the gun-banners, while question 35 is never mentioned, even by our side?

Why is this never mentioned, and can you get the word out? [ED: We mention it as often as possible, such as this editorial.]

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About Robert Farago

Robert Farago is the Publisher of The Truth About Guns (TTAG). He started the site to explore the ethics, morality, business, politics, culture, technology, practice, strategy, dangers and fun of guns.

27 Responses to Where Does That “9027 of Americans Support Expanded Background Checks” Come From?

  1. avatarSelousX says:

    Lies, damn lies, and lies about statistics?
    Expecting truth from these folks is a bit like expecting charity from a banker.

    • avatarIdahoPete says:

      Except you would have a much better chance of getting charity from the banker than the truth from the “progressives”.

  2. avatarJus Bill says:

    The Infringement Lobby will never let a fact get in the way of a good browbeating.

  3. avatarJay In Florida says:

    Unfortunately us preaching to each other will never get the facts out either.

    • avatarCliff H says:

      Perhaps not, but as long as we are armed with verifiable facts when and if we get into a discussion with the antis then we can perhaps make a difference.

  4. avatarCubby123 says:

    If you look at the number of people polled you will find it is normally 1000 or less never more than 2000 .I looked at ALL the polls that MAIG Stupidly posted all four pages of them when debates were happening in my state and of ALL the national polls the largest amount of people polled was less than 1800 and the least polled was 622 .In our state as a statewide poll on expanded backround checks ,that MAIG tried to push with their”on New York City payroll (which they tried to hide) attorney /lobbyist” ,the number was 2586 polled and 251 gun owners polled.So now they make the case that 86% of the state populous is behind them.
    This now gets put in front of the Governor who does his own poll and the result was 153000 against/ 27000 for!He Vetoed the bill but it goes to show you what crooked liars these bast.rds are!

    • avatarint19h says:

      This is perfectly normal. Of course, you can’t realistically ask every person in the state (well, you can, but at that point it’s a referendum, and those are fairly expensive to organize), but you can determine the sample size that you need to get an answer with the specified degree of accuracy. Provided that the group is selected by means that ensure an even spread, it will, indeed, give an accurate reflection of the society from which it is taken.

  5. avatarNYC2AZ says:

    I’m out and about, so my google-fu is somewhat limited. However, I do remember after Manchin-Toomey failed, the Washington Post reported another often ignored study that only 47% (recalling from memory here) were unhappy that the bill didn’t pass. That’s a little shy of 86%, 90%, or whatever other BS number the media and politicians keep trying to throw out there as fact.

  6. avatarTheThingThatGoesUp says:

    We’ve had universal expanded background checks for the last 20 years. That’s exactly what the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act of 1993 did. It expanded the Gun Control Act of 1968 to a universal National Instant Criminal Background Check System.

    “Do you favor or oppose requiring background checks for all gun buyers?”

    We already have background checks for all gun buyers — buying guns at a store. Which is what most people think when asked about buying something.

  7. avatarGS650G says:

    Nice!
    The question suggests right now there are no checks of any kind at any time or any place and that any form of check is a new idea. Apparently many people believe this and probably think school children pick up Uzi’s at Walmart.

    Next we ask who is better, the POTUS or an organization. The NRA can’t run for president nor does it have executive power. How about comparing the NRA to the Brady Bunch or VPC, although the names alone imply intrinsic goodness of intent.

    A better question is who is right, Barry O or the US Constitution? Since we live under one as law and the other needs to respect it.

    • avatarJus Bill says:

      Don’t forget the “comic” who keeps gathering signatures for blatantly illegal, anti-constitutional petitions. Proves people will sign anything.

  8. avatarOldBenTurninginGrave says:

    did the “over 90% support background checks” really appear in the question? If so, that’s going to lead many people to agree. Very poor survey design if so.

  9. avatarJWhite says:

    Frequent reader here…

    “Why is this never mentioned, and can you get the word out? [ED: We mention it as often as possible, such as this editorial.]”

    This is the first I’m hearing about it… The title of this article caught my eye immediately.

    “Gabrielle Giffords and Eric Schneiderman: ” I stopped reading at “Gabrielle G…” I haver no interest in here, or trolling.

    Just saying.

  10. avatarDoc 03911 says:

    Wasn’t that poll also conducted in three northeast blue states?

  11. avatarFrank Masotti says:

    The 90% number comes only from gun grabbers and the drive by media’s wet dreams. Seeing as there are more firearms owned by the public then there are people in this nation.

  12. avatartom w a glock says:

    Not to mention that Q-pac polls are invariably left-leaning outliers. Candidates put no stock in them, only the media loves them.

  13. avatarWilliam Burke says:

    OF COURSE they have no problem with lying, cheating of stealing. The end (a disarmed America) is bliss in their minds; the end justifies the means; and ignorance is bliss.

  14. avatarChris says:

    Never mentioned by the press, 85% of people think gun murder is up or the same when it has plummeted.

    The fact that the vast majority of Americans has no idea than gun murder has plummeted is the core of the problem. CNN will run a gun murder on its front page for days.

  15. avatarDyspeptic Gunsmith says:

    Pollsters can and do stack results by use of leading questions. There’s a principle known as “consistency commitment” that causes people to continue down a “road” of thought, even when they realize it isn’t really what they’d want to say if they had been asked the “nugget” question all by itself.

    Here’s a humorous take on this:

  16. avatarMIKE B says:

    Let me start off by saying im a 24yr old black man that grew up in the ghetto part of Dallas Tx, ok now that i got my resume out the way here my 2 cents.
    1. I HAVE NOT MET A SINGLE black person that is not a serious member of the firearms community(and there are very few of those) that has any clue as to what current firearms laws are in this state let alone any federal law. I cant count how many times i’ve have to tell some one that No you do not need a license to purchase a gun. yes you can have a LOADED weapon in your car with out a license. Yes AR15s and AKs are legal. Yes suppressors are legal. NO your gun does not have to be registered.

    2. I nor any one else i know have every been surveyed on anything that has to do with anything. And i guarantee nobody is walking into a black neighborhood knocking on doors asking for some one to complete a survey. They damn sure aren’t walking up to a group of young black guys with matching t shirts sitting on cars with ridiculously huge wheels.

    3. Most Black people are Liberals to begin with and are going to vote accordingly if they even vote at all.

  17. avatarFudgesicle says:

    Maybe I’m missing something, but I didn’t see anything on that page that suggested this was a national survey. The text indicates that this was a poll of Florida voters and that their views were “pretty much in line with” results from other states.

    Was there another source for the “90% of Americans” or is it just wishful thinking on their part?

  18. avatarPat says:

    Doing battle with the libtard (democrat) media elite.

  19. avatarAnonymous says:

    And…

    “The Quinnipiac University Poll, directed by Douglas Schwartz, Ph.D., conducts public
    opinion surveys in Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Florida, Ohio, Virginia
    and the nation as a public service and for research.”

    Why list some but not others? Why not list all? Why list any at all? Methinks the majority of their study comes from Blue states such as those listed above… and if so, their study is inherently skewed.

  20. avatarUncle Lar says:

    Of course 90% of subjects are for stronger background checks when they have been told over and over that such a law would somehow make them safer and catch the bad guys. Explain to folks that no study has ever proven that any sort of gun control is effective in reducing crime, then ask the question again.

  21. avatartom says:

    OHIO is not a blue state ! period !!! Maybe the cities , but not the state as a whole.

  22. avatarLuis says:

    In the same breath, many polls purport to show that 74% of NRA members “favor stricter background checks”, or “stricter gun laws” – often in the same sentence that 90% of Americans do. This was especially trumpeted about before and after the Senate vote on the Manchin-Toomey – SCHUMER (my emphasis) bill.

    That 74% figure is COMPLETELY BOGUS, as NRA doesn’t sell its membership list to anyone (I’m a proud Life Member). So how TF would they come up with that number? The only things that figure are (a) a made-up number, or (b) the respondents in the poll (mistakenly) answered they are NRA members. A lot of people think that buying or owning a gun makes them members of NRA. Not true.

    You’ll note that I mentioned Schumer’s name in the Senate bill. Many people think that the bill was a “compromise” between only Pat Toomey and Joe Manchin. WRONG!!!

    Schumer’s fingerprints were all over this bill. Maybe the MSM thought that by omitting his name, it would stand a better chance of passage. The fact that Schumer WAS involved, speaks tomes of volumes.

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