Explore The NRA Universe Of Websites

APPEARS IN News

Political Report | Despite Attacks, American Public Is With NRA

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Political Report | Despite Attacks, American Public Is With NRA

You may recall that during a presidential debate in October, Hillary Clinton named the NRA as among her favorite enemies. Unable to leave well enough alone, she went on to declare, “It’s time the entire country stood up to the NRA.”

What I find most striking about this brazen statement—and the attitude it represents—is just how out of touch Clinton is when it comes to the NRA, our membership and the tens of millions of Americans who support our work to protect and promote the Second Amendment. While her proclamation may have provided some political theater during a Democratic presidential debate, it’s clear she fails to grasp how important freedom is to the American people.

One way to measure where the public stands on a given issue is, of course, with polling. Polling has become the lifeblood of modern politics, and while the media can hyper-focus on polls at times, they can tell us a great deal about where the American people are, where they have been, and where they are likely to be on a given candidate or issue.

Recent polling illustrates that Clinton’s decision to incorporate anti-gun messaging and direct attacks on NRA is ill-advised if she wants to win the White House. In fact, the numbers show that the American public will be standing with NRA this fall. There is a great deal of work to be done between now and then, but one thing is clear—the American people are on our side.

A Rasmussen poll from early December asked participants if they agreed or disagreed with the statement that “[t]he NRA supports gun policies that make all Americans safer.” To that, 61 percent agreed, with 35 percent indicating that they agreed strongly.

Interestingly, more who identified with Democrats agreed with the statement (46 percent) than disagreed with the statement (45 percent).

Clinton might believe that pandering to her liberal base by attacking the NRA is a smart gambit, but these numbers suggest she is treading in dangerous waters.

With today’s 24/7 media cycle, she won’t be able to backtrack when it comes time to appeal to Republicans and Independents during the general election. Even among Democrats, she is not with the majority.

These results are buttressed by October Gallup polling on whether participants had a favorable or unfavorable view of the NRA. In this poll, 58 percent of Americans had a favorable view of NRA, with the highest level of “very favorable” opinions (26 percent) since Gallup first asked this question in 1989. Even more troubling for Clinton and other anti-gun elites, 56 percent of political moderates had a favorable view of the NRA.

A clear majority of Americans holding a favorable view of the NRA is indeed good news, but it is more gratifying when one considers what the trend on this polling question shows. When Gallup asked this question in 1995, a majority of Americans (51 percent) had an unfavorable view of the NRA, while only 42 percent held a favorable opinion. A 16-point flip over the last two decades is an incredible testament to the hard work and dedication of NRA members educating the public regarding who we are and what we stand for.

These poll results are even more striking given the negative attacks leveled at our organization during the last several months by President Barack Obama, Michael Bloomberg, Clinton and other anti-gun elites who leverage vast media conglomerates to do their bidding. That a majority of Americans are able to see through the propaganda shows how much the anti-gunners continue to underestimate the NRA and our value to the American people.

And speaking of trends, the results of an ABC/Washington Post poll conducted in the aftermath of the terrorist attack in San Bernardino, Calif., are very instructive. Among other things, participants were asked if they favor an “assault weapon” ban. Remarkably, support for such a ban has fallen to an all-time low, with a majority (53 percent) currently opposed. While 80 percent of the public favored the ban in 1994, only 45 percent support it today. That 35-point shift is the result of a lot of hard work educating the public about what at one time was characterized as a “common-sense” measure to promote public safety. Today, such bans are more appropriately viewed by the American people with the skepticism they warrant.

All of this serves as a reminder of the enormous stakes in this election year. The American people are with us and our message. It’s now up to us to ensure our voices are heard at the ballot box.

Chris W. Cox

BY Chris W. Cox

NRA-ILA Executive Director

Follow This Contributor

Chris W. Cox has served as the executive director of the Institute for Legislative Action, the political and lobbying arm of NRA, since 2002. As NRA’s principal political strategist, Cox oversees eight NRA-ILA divisions: Federal Affairs; State & Local Affairs; Public Affairs; Grassroots; Finance; Research & Information; Conservation, Wildlife & Natural Resources; and Office of Legislative Counsel. Cox also serves as chairman of NRA’s Political Victory Fund (NRA-PVF), the Association’s political action committee; president of the NRA Freedom Action Foundation (NRA-FAF), which focuses on non-partisan voter registration and citizen education; and chairman of NRA Country, an effort to bring country music artists together with NRA members in support of our Second Amendment freedoms and hunting heritage.

TRENDING NOW
Washington: NRA Files Legal Challenge Against Misleading Ballot Title for Gun Control Initiative

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Washington: NRA Files Legal Challenge Against Misleading Ballot Title for Gun Control Initiative

Yesterday, NRA filed a legal challenge in the Thurston County Superior Court objecting to the misleading and inadequate ballot title for Initiative 1639, which seeks to further restrict the Second Amendment rights of Washington's law-abiding citizens.  The Thurston ...

Massachusetts: Anti-Second Amendment Bills Rolled into Committee Substitute

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Massachusetts: Anti-Second Amendment Bills Rolled into Committee Substitute

On May 23rd, the Massachusetts state House of Representatives will be voting on House Bill 4517, which would allow firearms to be seized from individuals following baseless accusations without proper due process.

Illinois: House Passes Bill for Firearm Surrender Without Due Process

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Illinois: House Passes Bill for Firearm Surrender Without Due Process

On May 23rd, the Illinois state House of Representatives voted 80-32 to pass House Amendment 2 to House Bill 2354 to allow Second Amendment rights to be revoked without due process.  HA 2 to HB 2354 now ...

Illinois: Gun Control Bills to be Heard This Week

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Illinois: Gun Control Bills to be Heard This Week

The Illinois state House of Representatives can take action any day on House Amendment 1 to Senate Bill 2580 to expand the 72 hour waiting period to all firearms.  On May 24th, the Illinois state ...

Hard Times for Dick's as Second Amendment Supporters Respond to Company’s Anti-Gun Bent

Hunting  

News  

Friday, May 11, 2018

Hard Times for Dick's as Second Amendment Supporters Respond to Company’s Anti-Gun Bent

We have recently been reporting on the bizarre anti-gun activism of one of the nation’s larger firearm retailers, Dick’s Sporting Goods and its affiliated Field & Stream stores. First, the company announced it would stop selling most centerfire semi-automatic ...

New Jersey Action Needed: Senate Committee Passes Multiple Gun Control Bills

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

New Jersey Action Needed: Senate Committee Passes Multiple Gun Control Bills

Yesterday, the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee considered and passed multiple anti-gun measures. 

Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms

Gun Laws  

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms

CAUTION: Federal and state firearms laws are subject to frequent change. This summary is not to be considered as legal advice or a restatement of law.

Sorry, Alyssa, But We're Glad We Came

News  

Friday, May 11, 2018

Sorry, Alyssa, But We're Glad We Came

You likely recall we mentioned a new anti-gun organization recently formed, which was billed as the brainchild of actress Alyssa Milano.  You may also recall that we reported her group, NoRA, had made the vaguely threatening proclamation, ...

News  

Friday, April 27, 2018

NRA Statement on Yeti

The National Rifle Association released the following statement from in response to Yeti’s inaccurate statements:

Anti-Gun Democrat Proposes Banning Semi-Autos and Going After "Resisters"

News  

Friday, May 11, 2018

Anti-Gun Democrat Proposes Banning Semi-Autos and Going After "Resisters"

The headline of the USA Today op-ed said it all. Anti-gun Congressman Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) last week advocated for legislation to ban an as-yet undetermined class of semi-automatic firearms and to “go after resisters” who refuse to relinquish their ...

MORE TRENDING +
LESS TRENDING -

More Like This From Around The NRA

NRA ILA

Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.