Tags: americans | senate | guns

Poll: Majority of Americans Unhappy with Senate's Gun Vote

By Melanie Batley   |   Thursday, 02 May 2013 09:19 AM

A majority of Americans say they're either angry or disappointed by last month's Senate gun vote which struck down proposals for tougher regulations, a new poll released Thursday found.

According to the CBS News/ New York Times survey of 965 adults, 59 percent of Americans are dissatisfied with the results of the Senate vote on expanding background checks for guns sales, including 19 percent of respondents who said they were angry and 40 percent who were disappointed.

The vast majority of respondents, or 88 percent, said they support background checks for all gun buyers, a measure that failed to get the needed 60 votes for passage. That view was shared across political parties, including 86 percent of Republicans, 95 percent of Democrats, and 83 percent of independents.

Americans, however, appear to be more divided about tightening gun laws generally.

According to the poll, 54 percent of survey respondents think gun laws should be tougher, while 33 percent say the laws shouldn't change and just 10 percent think they should be relaxed.

Meanwhile, public opinion is divided on banning semi-automatic weapons, with 50 percent favoring a ban compared to 47 who oppose one.

The wide-ranging poll conducted on April 24-28 also surveyed public opinion on a number of other issues including immigration reform, deficit reduction, and the economy.

On immigration, about four in five Americans, or 83 percent, say they favor a system to offer a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants provided certain conditions are met, such as a requirement to learn English, pass a criminal background check, and pay fines and back taxes.

Meanwhile, 59 percent of those surveyed favor using a combination of tax increases and spending cuts to reduce the budget deficit, with more Americans proposing to make cuts to the military (43 percent) instead of Medicare (23 percent) or Social Security (13 percent).
The poll also found that 68 percent of Americans think the economy is in bad shape compared to 31 percent who think it's improving.

The survey also showed that almost as many people disapprove of the president's handling of his job as approve. Forty-five percent disapprove, including eight out of 10 Republicans. This compares to 47 percent who approve, most of them Democrats.

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