Poll: Trump, Congress not doing enough to prevent mass shootings

By Susan McFarland  |  Updated Feb. 20, 2018 at 10:13 AM
share with facebook
share with twitter
1 of 4
| License Photo

Feb. 20 (UPI) -- More than half of Americans say neither President Donald Trump nor Congress are taking enough action to prevent mass shootings, a new survey Tuesday said.

The ABC News/Washington Post poll questioned more than 800 people nationwide after the shooting attack that killed 17 people at a South Florida high school last week.

Fifty-eight percent said stricter gun laws could have prevented the Parkland, Fla., shooting -- but there was less of a consensus on exactly what action should be taken. Respondents were split on the issue of an outright assault weapons ban, with no change from 2016, the poll said.

Seventy-seven percent of respondents said better mental health screening and treatment might have prevented the Parkland shooting.

Lower on the list was an option to allow teachers to carry firearms, something U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos last week called an "opportunity and an option." Forty-two percent said that option could have prevented the attack.

The poll, conducted by Langer Research Associates, also found that 77 percent of Americans said Congress is not doing enough to avert mass shootings, and 62 percent said the same thing about Trump.

The survey showed that banning assault weapons, like the semiautomatic AR-15-style rifle used in the Florida attack, remains a near split with 50 percent in favor and 46 percent opposed.

Gender, region and party affiliation showed a divide in opinion. The survey revealed 55 percent of women support a ban, compared with 43 percent of men. In the Northeast, support for a ban reached 66 percent, versus the mid-40s elsewhere in the United States.

Support for an assault weapons ban saw the widest gap in party affiliation -- with 83 percent support among liberal Democrats and just 26 percent support among conservative Republicans.

The poll was conducted between Feb. 15-18 among 808 adults across the United States. The margin of error for the survey was 4 points, Langer Research said.

Related UPI Stories
Trending Stories