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Everytown Announces $250,000 Digital Campaign in Iowa to Pressure State Lawmakers to Act on Gun Safety

Everytown Also Unveiling New Survey Indicating Voters in Iowa Support Stronger Gun Laws by a 3:1 Margin and 75% Consider a Candidate’s Position on Guns “Very Important” to Their Vote in 2020

This Week, Everytown Announced $60 Million Electoral Program for 2020 — Double What it Spent in 2018

NEW YORK — Today, Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund announced a $250,000 digital campaign to put Iowa state Senators “on notice” and pressure them to pass extreme risk legislation — also known as red flag legislation. The campaign, which will feature multiple rounds of ads over the coming months, will begin this week with a $50,000 digital ad buy to support a new ad: “Iowa: On Notice.” The digital ad will run statewide with a focus on suburban women voters. 

Everytown is also unveiling a new survey, which found that voters in Iowa support stronger gun safety laws by a 3:1 margin and 75% of voters consider a candidate’s position on guns “very important” to their vote in 2020.

“There’s no question that Iowans support common-sense gun laws and are demanding that their leaders take action to end gun violence in our communities,” said Traci Kennedy, a volunteer with Iowa Moms Demand Action, a part of Everytown for Gun Safety. “So this week we’re putting Iowa state lawmakers on notice: they can either listen to their constituents and pass meaningful gun safety laws, or we’ll put our grassroots power and money toward holding them accountable in 2020.”

This spend comes on the heels of growing momentum for common-sense gun safety legislation in Iowa. In recent years, voters across party lines have increasingly demanded common-sense solutions to reduce gun violence — even in this traditionally conservative state, the majority of voters support stronger gun laws and broadly agree that it is possible to keep guns out of the hands of criminals and other dangerous people while also protecting the rights of gun owners. Despite support from the majority of Iowans for gun safety legislation, state lawmakers have been working to roll back existing gun laws in the state.

The digital campaign announcement is part of Everytown’s first digital ad campaign pressuring state legislators in 2020, the first since Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund and Victory Fund spent $2.5 million to flip Virginia’s General Assembly to a gun sense majority in November 2019. Last week, Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund and Victory Fund announced it would spend at least $60 million on the 2020 elections. 

The ad text reads:

Hundreds of Iowans are shot and killed every year.

Tell Iowa lawmakers: Pass effective gun safety laws. Send a message.

A sample Facebook post headline accompanying the ad will read:

Tell Iowa Lawmakers: Pass A Lifesaving Extreme Risk Law!

The ad will click through to a landing page, which asks Iowans to sign a petition calling on the Iowa state lawmakers to support extreme risk protection order legislation.

The digital campaign announcement accompanies the release of a new poll conducted by Global Strategy Group on behalf of Everytown. The results of the poll show that voters in Iowa overwhelmingly support stronger gun laws and consider a candidate’s position on guns “very important” to their vote in 2020. 

READ THE SURVEY MEMO RESULTS HERE

The poll found a majority of respondents – including critical swing groups like independents, suburban women, and undecided voters – support legislation that would require background checks on all gun sales (81% support) and block domestic abusers from owning guns (90% support). The majority of respondents also supported the enactment of extreme risk legislation, also known as red flag laws, which give family or law enforcement a way to remove guns from someone who is exhibiting violent or unstable behavior (75% support).

Additional key findings include:

  • Requiring background checks on all gun sales is the TOP issue among suburban women by a six-point margin. 
  • Voters support stronger gun laws by a 3:1 margin (46% stronger/15% less strong);
  • Voters broadly agree that it is possible to keep guns out of the hands of criminals and other dangerous people while also protecting the rights of gun owners (61% possible/39% not possible);
  • 51% of voters would never vote for a candidate who doesn’t support background checks, a mark that ranked third behind only healthcare and national security; and
  • Nearly 53% of Iowa voters are less likely to vote for a candidate who opposes a red flag law, while nearly two-thirds of voters are less likely to support someone who stands in the way of background checks for all gun sales.

Global Strategy Group conducted a survey of 617 likely voters in Iowa. 264 people are killed by gun violence every year in Iowa, and Iowa gun deaths are on the rise, increasing by 24 percent between 2008 and 2017.