The new polling released today shows overwhelming support among Vermonters for common-sense gun laws that will keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people. In fact, polls found that 81 percent of likely voters in Vermont – including 77 percent of gun owners – support criminal background checks on all gun sales.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 6, 2014
NEW POLLING REVEALS 81 PERCENT OF LIKELY VOTERS AND 77 PERCENT OF GUN OWNERS IN VERMONT SUPPORT CRIMINAL BACKGROUND CHECKS ON ALL GUN SALES
Vermont Gun Violence Prevention Advocates, Faith Leaders, Law Enforcement and Gun Owners United Today to Release Poll Results; Announced Legislative Priority to Pass Background Check Law in 2015
Gun Sense Vermont brought together gun violence prevention advocates, faith leaders, law enforcement, and gun owners today to release new polling data and announce plans to pass legislation to require criminal background checks on all gun sales during the 2015 session. The new polling released today shows overwhelming support among Vermonters for common-sense gun laws that will keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people. In fact, polls found that 81 percent of likely voters in Vermont – including 77 percent of gun owners – support criminal background checks on all gun sales.
In addition, survey results also showed that a strong majority of voters (67%) and a majority of gun owners (61%) in Vermont would be more likely to vote for a candidate who supports common-sense gun laws like background checks on all gun sales.
Locally in Vermont, half of all homicides throughout the past twelve years are related to domestic violence. Compounded with the fact that drug trafficking in the state has spiked exponentially, it’s imperative that Vermont enacts simple, common-sense laws that will keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people – including domestic abusers and drug traffickers. Criminal background checks on all gun sales will protect Vermonters and save lives.
At a press conference today, gun safety advocates highlighted that the safety of Vermonters is dependent on stronger gun laws in the state and that it is time for Vermont to join a growing list of states who didn’t wait for Washington, and took matters into their own hands to pass safer gun laws.
“An overwhelming majority of Vermonters – including 81 percent of likely voters and 77 percent of gun owners – have spoken loud and clear: closing the loophole that allows guns into the hands of dangerous people is a top priority for the 2015 legislative session,” said Ann Braden, President of Gun Sense Vermont. “Requiring a criminal background check on all gun sales will keep Vermonters safe.”
"We can choose to live differently: to end the fear of the havoc gun violence can wreak on our families and communities. This issue knows no boundaries of religion, race, class or age,” said Reverend Mary Brownlow, Pastor of the Norwich Congregational Church. “We can choose as a community to stand together and work for safer gun laws that will bring more security to the lives of our fellow Vermonters."
“Whether it’s a small town, or a big city – gun violence can happen anywhere. It can enter our streets, schools, shopping malls and places of worship,” said Ed Cafferty, professor at Champlain College with over a decade of law enforcement experience. “Ensuring we close the loopholes in our system that allow guns to easily get into the hands of dangerous people is a necessity in Vermont. A background check is a common-sense measure that will save lives and help protect law enforcement in the line of duty.”
“I stand with the 77 percent of Vermont gun owners that believe in a criminal background check on all gun sales. We know these work and are the single, most important thing we can do to keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people,” said Dan Mulligan, a local gun owner and hunter. “My fellow Vermonters are proud gun owners, but they know that with this right comes responsibility.”
“As a responsible gun owner, I know that the most important thing we can do is to keep guns away from dangerous people, and I agree with the vast majority of Vermonters who support these checks,” said Rama Schneider, gun owner and Williamstown School Board Member.