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86% of All Floridians Support Passage of H.R. 8, the Bipartisan Background Checks Act

Universal Background Checks Boast More Public Support than Senator Marco Rubio

Today, Giffords, the gun safety organization founded by former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, released new Florida polling that outlines record support for H.R. 8, the Bipartisan Background Checks Act, and a growing trend of Florida voters demanding Senator Marco Rubio vote for the legislation nearly five years after the shooting at Pulse nightclub, and three years since Parkland. Since those mass shootings, and continued federal inaction, gun deaths in the US reached their highest levels in decades with more than 38,000 Americans dying each year from gun violence — an average of 100 Americans every day.  

“Floridians are all too familiar with the devastating impact of gun violence and this poll shows they want action, now,” said former Congresswoman and Giffords Senior Advisor Debbie Mucarsel-Powell. “Our state loses loved ones to gun violence violence every single day and we can’t wait any longer for the Senate to act. Senator Rubio has been put on notice that if he yet again does nothing to address this epidemic, voters will hold him accountable.” 

The study, conducted by Global Strategy Group, surveyed hundreds of 2020 Florida voters, and outlined their preferences around background checks, as well as how likely they would be to support their representatives if they voted in favor of passing similar laws. The polling specifically focused on Senator Marco Rubio and his continued inaction on the issues as well as  the bankruptcy of the N.R.A. which for years supported his campaign.  Key toplines include: 

  • Floridans are calling on their elected leaders to pass the Bipartisan Background Checks Act. An overwhelming majority of Floridians (86%), including Democrats (97%), Republicans (82%), gun owners (82%) and persuadable voters (85%), support the Bipartisan Background Checks Act, also known as HR8, which requires background checks on all gun sales and transfers of firearms.
    • That means Florida voters are 37 points more favorable toward this bill than they are toward former President Trump (49% favorable/49% unfavorable) and nearly twice as likely to say they support background checks as to say they would re-elect Senator Rubio.
  • Floridians will not take no for an answer. Background checks are now a key litmus test. The majority of Florida voters (72%), including Democrats (73%), independents (76%), Republicans (70%), persuadable voters (74%) and gun owners (74%), say they would never vote for a candidate who opposes background checks.
  • Floridians care about and support stronger gun laws. Three years after the horrific shooting in Parkland, the majority of Florida voters say they care about a candidate’s position on gun laws more than they have in years past (66% more important) and that they have become more supportive of stronger gun laws over the last few years (60% more supportive/only 12% say they have become less supportive).
  • Republicans who oppose background checks lose their partisan advantage. Absent any other information about candidates, Floridians are inclined to vote for a Republican over a Democrat (49% Republican/45% Democrat) for U.S. Senate. But when a Republican candidate opposes background checks, the candidate opens the door to Democratic victories. A Democrat who supports background checks defeats a Republican who does not by 23 points.
  • The Florida Senate race can be won or lost on background checks. Florida voters are currently split on whether they would like to re-elect or replace Senator Rubio in the Senate (45% re-elect/44% replace), and his decision on background checks could carry immense weight.

The Florida polling from Global Strategy Group, aligns with recent polling from Everytown and Giffords that shows 93% of Americans support background checks on all gun sales (which is on par with job creation and COVID-19 relief). It also found that 86% of Americans who split their votes between parties agreed that “there is no excuse for the next president and Congress not to pass background checks into law.”


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