A majority of Americans think that government error is more responsible for the high school shooting in Parkland, Florida, rather than a lack of gun control. A new national survey conducted by Rasmussen Reports finds 54% of American adults believe the failure of government agencies to respond to numerous warning signs is more to blame for the mass shooting.
Thirty-three percent (33%) attribute the deaths more to a lack of adequate gun control and 11% say something else. Of those Americans who have children of elementary or secondary school age, a hopping 61% say the government is more to blame and just 23% say a lack of adequate gun control.
Fifty-six percent (56%) of men, 53% of women, 51% of adults ages 18 to 39, 59% of adults ages 40 to 64 and 49% ages 65 and above all say government. That also includes 58% of white adults, 44% of black adults and 50% of adults of other races. Fifty-five percent (55%) of unaffiliated adults agree with 75% of Republicans and even 36% of Democrats.
The shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School was perpetrated by 19-year-old Nikolas Cruz, who ultimately killed 17 people and wounded at least 14 others. Fatalities included 14 students and 3 educators. Government agencies from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) down to the local level failed to take action even though they had repeated and specific warnings.
Richard Baris, Editor-in-Chief at PPD Elections and Director of Big Data Poll, echoed the findings of the Rasmussen Reports survey. While the Big Data Poll found increased support for stricter gun control levels in the immediate aftermath of the tragic shooting on Valentine’s Day, Floridians still opted for arms guards and personnel over gun control.
“We’ve seen this many times before in the aftermath of a mass shooting. The immediate, dare I say emotional reaction, results in a bump in the support for stricter gun control laws,” he said. “We measured that in Florida a few days after the shooting, but warned readers that support was soft. It’s now collapsing.”
Americans are watching the new, now daily revelations of apparent incompetence by government very closely. Still, Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel, a vocal critic of the National Rifle Association (NRA) and the Second Amendment, is refusing to resign.
Ninety percent (90%) of all Americans say they have been following news reports about the Florida killings at least somewhat closely, with 53% who have been following Very Closely.
The national survey of 1,000 American adults was conducted from February 21-22, 2018 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. See methodology.