More Americans believe mental illness is a great deal to blame for gun violence than any other factor, including access to guns, says new Gallup poll, and support for stricter gun laws is below 50 percent, Politico reports. Forty-eight percent of those surveyed blamed mental illness a great deal, the same number as a poll taken just after a 2011 mass shooting in Tucson, Az., at then-Rep. Gabrielle Giffords's congressional event.
The number who blame easy access to guns a great deal for shootings has decreased 6 points since January 2011, to 40 percent. Drug use was blamed next, at 37 percent, a drop of 5 points, and violent movies, video games and music was at 32 percent. The survey was taken this week after the episode Washington, D.C.'s Navy Yard that killed 12 people and the gunman. While support for stricter gun laws has grown since 2011, it has dropped significantly since the Newtown, Ct., mass shooting last year.