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California 2nd Amend. Political Discussion & Activism Discuss gun rights activism and 2A related political topics here. All advice given is NOT legal counsel.

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  #1  
Old 11-10-2012, 12:43 PM
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Default Demographics in California - what % own guns?

I was reading an SFGate article on the demise of the Republican party in California (under 30% of registered voters, and now reduced to potted plant status in the state legislature), and wish I could answer with some basis in reality how many gunowners there are in the state. Are there any reliable data that show what percentage of Californians own firearms, or are sympathetic to gun rights?

The article:

http://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/...179.php#page-1
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Old 11-10-2012, 12:56 PM
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Not numbers - no direct data.

All we can go by is who the voters elect, to gauge 'approval' of gun issues. That's really indirect, and influenced by a whole bunch of 'confounding factors'.
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Old 11-10-2012, 1:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Librarian View Post
Not numbers - no direct data.

All we can go by is who the voters elect, to gauge 'approval' of gun issues. That's really indirect, and influenced by a whole bunch of 'confounding factors'.
I thought perhaps Field Poll, or some other polling entity, might have included a question on firearms ownership or attitude in one of its general surveys of state residents.
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Old 11-10-2012, 1:15 PM
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7% (I pulled this from my rear, but it feels right). :-)
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Old 11-10-2012, 1:21 PM
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I'd say about 17%
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Old 11-10-2012, 1:58 PM
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Here are a few links. It's question that hasn't been answered to anyone's true satisfaction.

An archived CGN discussion: http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/a.../t-197866.html

That thread showed a study of "behavioral risk factors" in which 21% of 3900 surveyed Californians reported having one or more firearm on their property: http://www.schs.state.nc.us/SCHS/brf.../firearm3.html

Another study claims 24% of Californians own guns: http://www.apps.cdph.ca.gov/epicdata...unownstore.htm

And an infographic image on HuffPost from this year, showing number of firearms per capita (which is not at all the same as percentage of population that's armed): http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/0...n_1762059.html
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Old 11-10-2012, 6:54 PM
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now for the bonus question. how many own 10 or more?
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Old 11-10-2012, 9:07 PM
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2001 Rand report said
Quote:
Thirty-four percent of children in the United States (representing more than 22 million children in 11 million homes) live in homes with at least one firearm. In 69 percent of homes with firearms and children, more than one firearm is present.
Source data for Rand is this report; they say
Quote:
Objectives. This study determined the prevalence and storage patterns of firearms in US homes with children.
Methods. We analyzed data from the 1994 National Health Interview Survey and Year 2000 objectives supplement. A multistage sample design was used to represent the civilian non- institutionalized US population.
Results. Respondents from 35% of the homes with children younger than 18 years (representing more than 22 mil- lion children in more than 11 million homes) reported having at least 1 fire- arm
but I can't find how the NHIS survey got its data.

See also http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/s...1&postcount=22

Round numbers, 2000 Census: CA has 11 million households; 36% have children under 18 (3,960,000); 34% of that is 1,346,000. If California is not substantially different from other parts of the US, there's a floor.

Similarly, General Social Survey looks at that question - reported in the Guardian (UK)
Quote:
1. We don't know the percentage of Americans who live in a house with a gun

We have to rely on polling data because there is no national database of who owns a gun. One poll is the the now biennial General Social Survey (GSS) conducted by the University of Chicago. These surveys are conducted face-to-face. We also traditional telephone polls conducted by ABC/Washington Post, CBS/New York Times, and Gallup.

The GSS found in the 2000s that an average 35% of Americans lived in a house with a gun in it, but that average was 7 percentage points higher in 23 telephone polls over the same period. This may not seem like a large difference, but it is, considering that we are dealing with 10,000+ interviews in the GSS surveys and 20,000+ interviews in the traditional telephone surveys. Why the gap?

The GSS gets about 70% of people to respond to its surveys, while traditional telephone poll response rates have fallen from about 30% in 2000 to about 10% today. Response rates for traditional telephone surveys tend to undercount blacks and Latinos. Africa -Americans and Latinos are also less likely than whites to own guns. Yet that may not have as much of an impact as you might think. We know that low response rates did not affect questions such as whether a person was a Democrat or a Republican.

You might be tempted to believe that people might answer more truthfully to a sensitive subject over the phone. People have not, however, changed their responses in GSS surveys since 2002, despite more anonymous methods being applied. Political science literature also indicates that people were actually less likely to be truthful over the phone than in person when it came to sensitive topics.

The truth is that there is no way to know whether 42%, 35%, or some other percentage of Americans are in a household with guns.
Or, CA-DOJ reluctantly publishes DROS data, most recently http://oag.ca.gov/sites/all/files/pd...dros_chart.pdf For 2011, they report 600K. DROS does not necessarily mean an addition to the total in the state - it includes PPTs, and omits guns moved here by new residents.

Eyeballing, since I can't be bothered to put it into excel, about 8.6 million DROS records since 1991. No way to get the number of buyers, even an aggregate with no identifying info - I have written and asked, and been ignored.

In short, no reliable data.
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Last edited by Librarian; 11-10-2012 at 9:35 PM..
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  #9  
Old 11-11-2012, 6:46 AM
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Good gravy! Every gun purchase we make is scrutinized by a team of celibate Buddhists, then copied, duplicated, mirrored in the cloud, and printed out on velum!

Do you mean to tell me these stats are "unavailable?" What kind of Big Brother .gov is that?

Incompetent.

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Old 11-11-2012, 7:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skidmark View Post
I was reading an SFGate article on the demise of the Republican party in California (under 30% of registered voters, and now reduced to potted plant status in the state legislature), and wish I could answer with some basis in reality how many gunowners there are in the state. Are there any reliable data that show what percentage of Californians own firearms, or are sympathetic to gun rights?

The article:

http://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/...179.php#page-1
The answer is clearly "not enough" gun owners in the state. But in reality, you'll never know how many. Back country folks will never tell anyone what they own or how many.

The dems own this bankrupt state. As California goes, so does the US. (Sadly)
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Old 11-11-2012, 7:18 AM
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"Do you support the right of private citizens to defend themselves, their lovex ones, and their property during natural disasters with firearms?"

"Do you currently own one or more firearms?"


I sure would like to see the numbers for those polling questions.

.
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Old 11-11-2012, 8:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by choprzrul View Post
"Do you currently own one or more firearms?"

I sure would like to see the numbers for those polling questions.
It would be difficult to get solid data like that. I'm not likely to provide an answer about any firearm ownership to some random pollster. I suspect I'm not alone in that opinion.
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Old 11-11-2012, 8:17 AM
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More and more everyday, but many of those people are ignorant or apathetic politically.

If a good portion of those folks would be involved the picture would change drastically
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Old 11-11-2012, 5:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CDFingers View Post
Good gravy! Every gun purchase we make is scrutinized by a team of celibate Buddhists, then copied, duplicated, mirrored in the cloud, and printed out on velum!

Do you mean to tell me these stats are "unavailable?" What kind of Big Brother .gov is that?

Incompetent.

CDFingers
If the government could identify with some accuracy the number of gunowners in the state, it would indicate the government could identify who owned guns. I'm happy with a situation in which the government does not know who owns guns.
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Old 11-11-2012, 5:29 PM
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seek and ye shall find: http://oag.ca.gov/sites/all/files/pd...ros_chart.pdf?

293,421 handguns in 2011
307,811 long guns
5,707 total denials
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Old 11-11-2012, 5:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laythor View Post
seek and ye shall find: http://oag.ca.gov/sites/all/files/pd...ros_chart.pdf?

293,421 handguns in 2011
307,811 long guns
5,707 total denials
That's a measure of how many firearms were processed by DROS last year.
It's not a very good metric for the overall number of gun owners in the state.
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Old 11-11-2012, 6:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kukuforguns View Post
If the government could identify with some accuracy the number of gunowners in the state, it would indicate the government could identify who owned guns. I'm happy with a situation in which the government does not know who owns guns.
I can't figure out if CD wants an inept government to be in charge of things it can't handle. Or is he just happy the government can't handle the things of which it is in charge?
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Old 11-11-2012, 11:14 PM
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Vlad is correct. Guns are very popular in California. I seen a stat that stated 20% of Californians are gunowners but I believe its more. The problem is people are ignorant, apathetic or just plan lazy.
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Old 11-11-2012, 11:32 PM
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To the original question as well, not all gun owners are truly for gun rights and there are people who don't personally have guns, but recognize the importance of the RKBA. I agree with Librarian, no reliable data to reference for your idea.
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Old 11-12-2012, 4:34 AM
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What percentage have or recently had hunting licenses?

Also, while CA may be growing more urban/liberal, parts of the country
New Hampshire, the American Redoubt etc. are growing more conservative
due to relocation. People are moving to places they fit in.
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Old 11-12-2012, 4:48 AM
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The North Carolina State Center for Health Statistics published an estimate in 2001 that about 21% of Californians keep guns in or around the home.

http://www.schs.state.nc.us/SCHS/brf.../firearm3.html
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Old 11-12-2012, 5:45 AM
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I'd buy that given the direction CA is headed. I'm afraid OP isn't going to find any comforting demographic data to support his efforts. Unfortunately.
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Old 11-12-2012, 7:05 AM
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How many gun owners are single issue voters though?
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Old 11-12-2012, 7:17 AM
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Originally Posted by voiceofreason View Post
How many gun owners are single issue voters though?
If the actual number is 20% does it matter?
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Old 11-12-2012, 7:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skidmark View Post
I thought perhaps Field Poll, or some other polling entity, might have included a question on firearms ownership or attitude in one of its general surveys of state residents.
Would you answer a poll that asked you if you owned firearms? I wouldn't, it is non of anyone's business.
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Old 11-12-2012, 8:38 AM
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No one knows.

When there are no hard, verifiable facts or data, all we can do is speculate.
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Old 11-12-2012, 9:42 AM
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Gallop did a survey last year. The conclusion was that 47% of homes in the US have firearms and 34% of all Americans personally own a fire arm. My guess is that these numbers are low because many will not answer a survey question honestly to secure their privacy.

The published results don't break it out by state but I bet Gallop has the data. They do publish numbers by region. If California is like the rest of the west the number is 31%(and probably a bit higher)

see the following link for more details: http://www.gallup.com/poll/150353/se...hest-1993.aspx

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Old 11-12-2012, 10:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jorgyusa View Post
Gallop did a survey last year. The conclusion was that 47% of homes in the US have firearms and 34% of all Americans personally own a fire arm. My guess is that these numbers are low because many will not answer a survey question honestly to secure their privacy.

The published results don't break it out by state but I bet Gallop has the data. They do publish numbers by region. If California is like the rest of the west the number is 31%(and probably a bit higher)

see the following link for more details: http://www.gallup.com/poll/150353/se...hest-1993.aspx
Thanks, those are fantastic data to have on hand. They would appear to show that gun ownership as percentage of population is higher than previous estimates indicated. It would take a smarter person than me to extrapolate the western region data to California specifically, but I agree with you, given the likelihood of some gun owners to NOT respond to such surveys, CA is probably at least 30%.
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Old 11-12-2012, 10:15 AM
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Suppose it is a solid 30%. That matches your OP. So why would that matter to the 70% running this funny farm?

They don't give a rip about us. They want the guns and/or us gone.
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Old 11-12-2012, 12:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skidmark View Post
Thanks, those are fantastic data to have on hand. They would appear to show that gun ownership as percentage of population is higher than previous estimates indicated. It would take a smarter person than me to extrapolate the western region data to California specifically, but I agree with you, given the likelihood of some gun owners to NOT respond to such surveys, CA is probably at least 30%.
This is a prevailing attitude in this thread.

Why should gun owners be afraid to admit to owning guns? Aside from the about govt looking to confiscate guns and criminals targeting you, I would think that the more open people are about their values, the more exposure it will get in daily conversation.

It seems that whenever I talk about guns with company at my home, I find out that >50% of those people own guns! Even people who are anti will admit that their parents or relatives own guns. I suspect the percentage may be higher than we suspect, but many people are afraid to talk about it.

I'm not talking about putting a Frontsight lawn sign on my house advertising that I own guns, but the sooner that people feel comfortable talking about guns with others, the sooner I think we can make it more "socially acceptable". Right now, it almost feels like gunowners are in the closet!
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Old 11-12-2012, 12:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Librarian View Post
Not numbers - no direct data.

All we can go by is who the voters elect, to gauge 'approval' of gun issues. That's really indirect, and influenced by a whole bunch of 'confounding factors'.
My guess is that our critters like Yee, DiFi et al don't get elected on 2A issues.

I made it to jury selection once that coincidentally involved a firearm case. One of the lawyers asked for a show of hands how many of us owned guns. I was shocked to see about 75% of us.

Of course... this was in El Cajon. Parts of San Diego are a little "different" that way...
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Old 11-12-2012, 12:39 PM
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My aunt was a registered Republican. The party called her twice as week asking for donations so she asked to removed. She is not officially independent but votes Republican.

I'm in the same boat. I'm an independent who moves mostly Republican.

Also not all gun owners are enthusiasts like we are. My uncle owns a Ruger wheelgun and Mossy 500 but for him it's just HD tools. In no way he likes them as much as we do.
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Old 11-12-2012, 1:21 PM
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Originally Posted by therealnickb View Post
Suppose it is a solid 30%. That matches your OP. So why would that matter to the 70% running this funny farm?

They don't give a rip about us. They want the guns and/or us gone.
Hmm... my OP noted that GOP registration in California is plummeting, now below 30%. Republicans have become irrelevant at the state level. But 2A RKBA issues are more relevant than ever. And firearms ownership spans all political divisions, all ideologies. Any group or organization that advocates for gun rights as civil rights should heed the distinction, seems to me.
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Old 11-12-2012, 1:48 PM
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Hmm... my OP noted that GOP registration in California is plummeting, now below 30%. Republicans have become irrelevant at the state level.
That is simply not entirely accurate. Politically left bent people such as yourself certainly try to profit in making a larger story of it to endorse their positions. Republicans as "registrations" have been declining in California. There are certainly good valid conversations about all of that.

However those who then register independent are growing. That is where they are going. That doesn't mean that Republicans are irrelevant because people, even Dems, will vote for Repub candidates or their supported issues too - and have. Your premise is faulty to create a dilemma that somehow declines in GOP registrations means they are irrelevant. In history politics have always been tidal, and right now the GOP is experiencing for sure an ebb. Irrelevant? Far from it. In fact if you look at the numbers on candidates and propositions, 40-50% of the voters are not irrelevant - especially lower turn outs from just those positional types.
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Last edited by odysseus; 11-12-2012 at 1:51 PM..
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Old 11-12-2012, 3:27 PM
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If we could get the 30% who are gun owners to speak with one voice then we would a formidable group. Unfortunately it is like herding cats. I have spoken to gun owners at gun shows who see voting as waste of time. Then you have those for which only hunting is important or those for which self defense is the most important issue. With factions for shotguns and other factions for AR's, etc. Dividing us is the gun banners strategy. My attitude is that the 2nd amendment rights has no "but's".

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Old 11-12-2012, 3:28 PM
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Hmm... my OP noted that GOP registration in California is plummeting, now below 30%. Republicans have become irrelevant at the state level. But 2A RKBA issues are more relevant than ever. And firearms ownership spans all political divisions, all ideologies. Any group or organization that advocates for gun rights as civil rights should heed the distinction, seems to me.
So when the 2/3 of our state monkeys say turn in all the "evil" firearms..... (Of course you'll be allowed to keep your O/U shotguns and revolvers) what are you going to say. "Hey, some of us voted for you"

Sorry, this state is done until some kind if balance and common sense is restored. Looking at New York, I just don't see it happening. Too much power concentrated into relatively small areas.
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Old 11-12-2012, 4:22 PM
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That is simply not entirely accurate. Politically left bent people such as yourself certainly try to profit in making a larger story of it to endorse their positions. Republicans as "registrations" have been declining in California. There are certainly good valid conversations about all of that.

However those who then register independent are growing. That is where they are going. That doesn't mean that Republicans are irrelevant because people, even Dems, will vote for Repub candidates or their supported issues too - and have. Your premise is faulty to create a dilemma that somehow declines in GOP registrations means they are irrelevant. In history politics have always been tidal, and right now the GOP is experiencing for sure an ebb. Irrelevant? Far from it. In fact if you look at the numbers on candidates and propositions, 40-50% of the voters are not irrelevant - especially lower turn outs from just those positional types.
I'm not trying to profit from anything here - just acknowledging a harsh truth for the Republican Party in California - they hold no statewide elected office, and their minority position in the state legislature has now become a mere footnote, with the Democratic majority having secured enough votes to pass tax increases on their own.

But Republican voters are still quite relevant, as you note. And especially in coalition with other blocs.
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Old 11-12-2012, 5:26 PM
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I was reading an SFGate article on the demise of the Republican party in California (under 30% of registered voters, and now reduced to potted plant status in the state legislature), and wish I could answer with some basis in reality how many gunowners there are in the state. Are there any reliable data that show what percentage of Californians own firearms, or are sympathetic to gun rights?

The article:

http://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/...179.php#page-1

30% are repubs but only 43% are dems according to LA Times
http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/cali...alifornia.html

That's a large margin of Independents that can swing either way in any given election.
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Old 11-12-2012, 5:50 PM
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I have many liberal friends that vote democratic, but they are pro-gun. This why we need to be careful of how we talk about people and encourage pro-gun advocacy regardless of political affiliation.
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Old 11-12-2012, 5:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Skidmark View Post
I'm not trying to profit from anything here - just acknowledging a harsh truth for the Republican Party in California - they hold no statewide elected office, and their minority position in the state legislature has now become a mere footnote, with the Democratic majority having secured enough votes to pass tax increases on their own.

But Republican voters are still quite relevant, as you note. And especially in coalition with other blocs.
I moved out of California because my vote did not count when judges strike it down, and the makeup of the state started to change. A lot of your new democratic votes are coming from immigrants who want entitlements. There is plenty of money for that, right?
Anyway, back to the main topic; Do not think it is a good idea to tell anyone how many guns you have in a state that registers guns, and most of the elected officials are hostile to gun ownership.
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