While there is disagreement about gun ownership, polls show Americans are still strongly in favor of adding new firearms policies and restrictions, says the Washington Post. These include adding background checks to private gun sales, banning people with mental illnesses from buying guns and creating a federal database to track gun sales. Public support for these changes range from very strong to overwhelming, according to a Pew Research Center poll conducted in July.
Background checks for all gun sales are supported by 85 percent of respondents, Pew's poll found. Laws meant to stop mentally ill people from buying guns have support from 79 percent, while 70 percent support a federal database tracking gun sales. A fourth proposal — banning assault-style firearms — is supported by a majority of Americans (57 percent). The results were similar to a poll taken in January 2013, after a gunman killed 26, mostly children, at a school in Newtown, Conn. Yet legislation is unlikely because the issue surges to the front of the public consciousness before inevitably fading away.