Public Opinion Running Against Gun Control
This does not seem to be a fluke. Where long time-series of opinion data exist, the trend seems to be moving in the direction of protecting gun rights.
For example, since the 1960s, Gallup has been asking people whether the private ownership of handguns should be forbidden. The trend, which has the normal number of temporary ups and downs, has been from a robust majority who would support that proposition, to a robust majority who oppose it.
Since 1990, Gallup has been asking respondents whether the nation’s gun control laws on the sale of firearms should be “more strict,” “less strict” or should “kept as they are now.” The trend is downward, although again with some ups and downs depending on what gun violence is in the news.
A large collection of polls on the issue is found here.
Liberals who think that public opinion is on their side are simply kidding themselves. Although some polls show majorities in favor of this or that policy, the long term trend is in favor of the Second Amendment.
Further, demonizing the National Rifle Association is not a winning strategy in a general election (although it may mobilize core partisans in a primary). Gallup has found that a majority of respondents have a favorable view of the NRA.
And this leaves out of account the asymmetry of intensity: the fact that people who favor gun rights are more intense in their opinions than those who oppose them.
The push for gun control, fundamentally, reflects the cultural bias of the latte sipping, Prius driving, NPR listening liberals. It gives them a warm rush of self-righteousness. But increasingly, they are at odds with the broad public.