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Plurality of Americans think government could abuse 'red flag' gun laws, poll

Most Republicans and independents believe members of the government could abuse red flag laws against their political opponents.

Published: June 22, 2022 10:24am

Updated: June 22, 2022 11:59am

A plurality of Americans say they believe the government will abuse "red flag" gun control laws, according to a new poll from the Trafalgar Group in conjunction with Convention of States Action.

Most Democrats (53.5%) said they do not believe that red flag gun laws have "the potential to be abused by local authorities and government officials to disarm their political opponents and/or citizens who disagree with them." Though, about one-third of Democrats say they are "not sure" what the implications of the laws will be.

Among Republicans, 72.2% say they believe the gun laws "designed to temporarily take guns away from individuals" could be abused by government officials. More than half of independents (52.3%) agree.

More Democrats than Republicans participated in the survey, and independents comprised about one-quarter of participants.

The measure includes state funding to implement "red flag" laws and enhanced background checks. The Senate voted Tuesday evening to formally begin debate on the bill by a margin of 64-34. 

"Americans want real, workable solutions to the mass shootings we are seeing in this nation, but it’s obvious that they don’t see the proposed 'red flag' laws as the answer," said Convention of States Action President Mark Meckler.

"Government officials at all levels have spent the last two years demonizing their opponents and using whatever means possible to censor or threaten those who disagree with them, so the idea that we should now trust those same people to not abuse a law that could infringe on basic constitutional rights is laughable."

Earlier this week, a bipartisan group of senators released the legislative text of a narrow set of provisions to combat gun violence in the wake of a number of mass shootings across the U.S.

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