With guns emerging as a flash point in the presidential race and campaigns nationwide, gun-control advocates are spending tens of millions of dollars on a message: Stronger firearms laws can reduce gun violence, reports the New York Times. The National Rifle Association rejects the assertion, but a growing body of evidence from academics and advocacy groups supports the link between gun restrictions and a reduction in violence. Yesterday, the Center for American Progress, which supports gun control, issued an analysis contending that gun fatalities in states with weaker laws are more than three times as high as in those states with tougher restrictions, including background checks or permits.
Voters in California, Maine, Nevada, and Washington appear likely to approve toughened restrictions on guns next month, and the gun debate is playing out in dozens of congressional campaigns as well. The NRA has spent more than $20 million on advertisements backing Donald J. Trump, who has voiced his strong support for gun rights, while urging gun-rights supporters to rise up against his Democratic opponent, Hillary Clinton. While many Republicans abandon Trump over the release of a lewd recording, the NRA has not wavered. “Trump would appoint Supreme Court justices who respect the Constitution and would uphold an individual’s right to bear arms,” said the NRA’s Jennifer Baker. “Hillary Clinton would not.”