On the heels of a recent Quinnipiac University poll that found 92 percent of Americans, including gun owners, support background checks on all gun sales, Everytown for Gun Safety today issued its first “Gun Sense Voter” questionnaire, 10 questions for political candidates to tell Americans where they stand on gun safety. The release of the questionnaire is a critical part of Everytown’s Gun Sense Voter campaign, a first-of-its-kind initiative to mobilize one million Americans to vote for candidates who support gun safety measures this November and in elections ahead. Since the launch of the campaign in April, more than 650,000 Americans have already signed the Gun Sense Voter pledge, and 70 percent of signers are new Everytown supporters.
“For decades the NRA has asked candidates about their positions on guns – now we’re going toe-to-toe with the gun lobby and asking candidates 10 yes-or-no questions about preventing the gun violence that kills 86 Americans every day,” said John Feinblatt, President of Everytown for Gun Safety. “We know where the American public stands – more than 90 percent support common-sense gun safety measures like background checks – now it’s time for political candidates to tell us where they stand.”
“Never before has our side of the gun debate organized voters on the ground,” said Mitch Stewart, Founding Partner of 270 Strategies and Senior Advisor to Everytown for Gun Safety. “We know that Americans support common-sense reforms that will prevent gun violence, and now we’re asking them to vote on it. This election cycle will give American voters a chance to show that we will demand gun sense from our political leaders.”
The questionnaire asks candidates their positions on closing the loopholes in our background check system, keeping guns out of the hands of domestic abusers and stalkers, preventing child access to guns, prosecuting gun traffickers, and other critical gun safety issues. In addition to candidates’ answers, Everytown will take into account candidates’ prior statements, voting histories and co-sponsorships and will use this information to mobilize Americans to support or oppose candidates in November and beyond.
In Washington, Everytown’s legislative agenda includes closing the background check loophole by requiring criminal background checks on all gun sales and legislation to protect victims of domestic violence.
Everytown has also moved beyond Congress to bring the fight for common-sense gun policies to state capitols, corporate boards and state and federal elections – fields of play formerly occupied almost solely by the gun lobby. This year alone, Everytown and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America helped pass bipartisan legislation in six states that will protect women and children by keeping guns out of the hands of domestic abusers. Moms Demand Action has also led successful corporate campaigns that persuaded Target, Chipotle, Starbucks and Facebook to reform the companies’ gun policies to make customers and communities safer.