When pro-gun control advocates tell you they don’t want to take your guns, they actually want to take your guns.
At least, that’s the key takeaway from a YouGov survey released this week, which shows a significant number of self-identified Democratic respondents support the idea of total gun confiscation.
The poll, which was conducted between Feb. 25 and 27 and has a margin of error for registered voters of plus or minus 2.9 percentage points, surveyed 1,500 adults.
Of that number, YouGov found that 73 percent of self-identified Democrats “strongly” favor banning semi-automatic firearms. The survey found that an additional nine percent “somewhat” favor a ban of that sort.
Translation: 82 percent of surveyed Democrats say they favor a ban on semi-automatics, which would include not just rifles like the one used in the Feb. 14 Parkland massacre, which claimed the lives of 17 people, but also most handguns.
That’s a hell of a ban.
Fifty-three percent of Republican respondents said they’d oppose such a ban.
To be fair, though, the YouGov survey doesn’t bother to define terms, so it’s possible respondents just assumed the semi-auto question was in reference to AR-15-style rifles only. Still, that doesn’t speak well to the general population’s literacy regarding a fairly common product and an extremely topical subject.
Amazingly enough, this isn’t even the survey’s most shocking find. That distinction goes to how respondents answered the question: “Do you favor or oppose … [banning] the sale of all handguns, except those that are issued to law enforcement officers.”
If you can believe it, Democratic respondents were split on this question. Forty-four percent said they would support such a ban, while a oh-so-slightly larger 46 percent said they would oppose it.
In contrast, 81 percent of Republican respondents said they oppose the proposal.
Unlike the semi-auto question, there’s no ambiguity here for respondents to hide behind. The question is clear, and it’s amazing that these numbers would appear while we’re also having a national conversation about police brutality, Black Lives Matters, criminal justice reform and systemic racism.
That’s not all! The survey also found that Democratic respondents were loosely split on whether the Second Amendment ought to be repealed. Thirty-nine said they’d oppose it, while 41 percent said otherwise. The broader population, on the other hand, overwhelmingly opposed the idea by 60 percent to 21 percent.
There is, however, a moment of bipartisan consensus to be found in YouGov’s data. When respondents were asked if people with a “history of mental illness” should be prohibited from owning a firearm, both Republicans and Democrats said “yes.”
Eighty-six percent of Democratic respondents said they supported the idea, while 81 percent of Republicans said the same.
How we plan for authorities to define “mental illness,” or when a person should be found as sufficiently “ill” as to bar them from exercising their Second Amendment rights is going to a very fun and rewarding conversation when we get to it.