While there are walkouts being staged by students in communities across the country, and progressives planning more rallies in favor of gun control, a new poll shows that Americans remain unconvinced that stricter gun laws will reduce crime and do not trust the government to enforce those laws. A new Rasmussen Reports national survey finds that 15 percent of American Adults say stricter gun control laws will increase violent crime, while 39 percent think stricter laws would decrease violent crime. Another 39 percent believe more gun control laws would have no impact on violent crime.

According to Rasmussen Reports, these findings are in line with previous surveys.

Only 24 percent of Americans trust the government to fairly enforce gun control laws. The Rasmussen survey shows that 58 percent do not trust in the government’s ability to enforce those laws, while 18 percent are not sure.

These findings, too, are little changed from past surveys, according to Rasmussen.

The survey was conducted on February 19-20 and has a sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95 percent level of confidence.

Following last week's school shooting in Florida, Americans rate more gun control on the same level with treatment of the mentally ill as the best way to stop incidents of this kind. They also are a lot more concerned about how safe schools are, according to Rasmussen Reports.

56 percent of Democrats think stricter gun control laws will decrease violent crime, a view shared by only 22 percent of Republicans and 35 percent of unaffiliated adults. A majority (59 percent) of Republicans feel tighter gun control laws will have no impact on violent crime, but only 26 percent of Democrats and 37 percent of unaffiliated Americans agree.

A majority of Republicans (56 percent), Democrats (61 percent) and unaffiliated adults (55 percent) don’t trust the government to fairly enforce gun control laws. Nearly half (49 percent) who have a gun in their household say that more gun control laws will have no impact on violent crime. Of those polled, 54 percent who are not gun owners say more laws will decrease violent crime. Among adults who trust the government to fairly enforce gun control laws, 52 percent think stricter gun laws will decrease violent crime. Adults who lack trust in the government to enforce gun laws are more evenly divided.

Rasmussen Reports noted that support for more gun control has ranged from 40 percent to 56 percent in surveys since June 2008. There have been spikes, however, after widely reported incidents such as the shootings at Sandy Hook and Las Vegas. 

According to the survey, 66 percent believe that United States needs stricter enforcement of existing gun control laws.

Just 15 percent of voters believe most politicians raise gun-related issues to address real problems, while 74 percent believe politicians publicize their views on these issues to get elected. 

The Nikolas Cruz -- the 19-year-old accused of the shooting in Parkland, Florida, used an AR-15 style semi-automatic rifle. Most voters in the survey believe that there should be a ban on the purchase of semi-automatic guns such as the AR-15. And 51 percent think that buying a gun in the U.S. is too easy. 



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Spero News editor Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.

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