Most Latinos support gun reforms, abortion access in battleground states

Most Latinos support gun reforms, abortion access in battleground states

According to polling data released Wednesday by Voto Latino, a national advocacy group focused on mobilizing Latino youth, a large majority of more than 1,000 registered Latino voters in seven battleground states support gun reforms and access to abortion.

The online survey conducted by Change Research, a San Francisco-based polling firm, showed that 86% of respondents thought mass shootings in the U.S. are a crisis or major issue. The voters supported a number of gun reform measures, including 82%, who strongly supported background checks on all gun purchases.

The voters surveyed were registered voters in Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Nevada, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Texas.

Nearly 90% supported requiring people wanting to buy a handgun to go through gun safety training, and about two-thirds strongly or somewhat supported an assault weapons ban.

Respondents also expressed preference for increasing the minimum age to purchase a firearm to 21, and implementing red flag laws designed to keep guns away from people deemed to be at risk to themselves or others, and mandatory waiting periods, among other reforms. Enhanced background checks and incentives for states to adopt red flag laws are among the few provisions in the bipartisan federal gun bill that is currently in the Senate.

More than two-thirds of Latinos surveyed believe that abortion should be legal in most or all cases, with the strongest approval among young people under 35 and women. Nearly two-thirds of those surveyed said they would support a law to protect the right to get abortion in the U.S.

The poll has a margin of error of 3.1%.

In a news release, Maria Teresa Kumar, president and CEO of Voto Latino and MSNBC political commentator, said she believes it is time to put to rest the myth that Latinos oppose abortion access. She said there were concerns about gun violence among Latino voters. In a time when mass shootings and attacks on abortion access are front and center in our national politics, Latino voters are looking for candidates who support common sense gun policy as well as reproductive rights, Kumar said. These issues aren't liabilities for progressive candidates looking for Latino support - they are a major selling point. In battleground states, Latino voters support Democratic policies on flashpoint issues.