Over 77% say gun violence is more important than inflation, immigration, or abortion. A majority of Republicans, DeSantis voters, and gun owners also oppose the governor’s proposal.
Even as Gov. Ron DeSantis announces he expects lawmakers during the 2023 regular legislative session to pass a change in Florida gun laws that would allow people to carry guns without a permit, a new poll shows that Miami-Dade voters, particularly the Latino community, overwhelmingly oppose the Republican’s proposal.
Under current law, people who want to carry guns must get concealed-weapons licenses from the state Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. Constitutional carry would allow people to carry guns without the licenses.
“Basically, this was something that I’ve always supported,” DeSantis said, adding that “it is something that will be done in the regular session,” which will start March 7.
A Demand for Stronger Gun Laws
However, the poll released by Giffords Florida, the largest gun safety political program focused entirely on the Sunshine State, found that after the state’s most populous county suffered a spike in gun violence last year, voters in Miami-Dade demand stronger gun laws.
RELATED: Una Dura Realidad: Gun Violence Disproportionally Affects Black and Latino Communities. Here’s What Needs to Be Done.
Some of the Global Strategy Group survey findings include:
- Over three-quarters of Miami-Dade voters (77%) say gun violence was very important to their vote this November—more than inflation (75%), immigration (66%), or abortion (62%).
- Miami-Dade voters support stronger gun laws by a 20:1 margin (65% stronger/3% less strong).
- Over two-thirds of Miami-Dade voters oppose permitless carry (68%) with 60% of voters strongly opposing the policy.
- Voters’ opposition grew by 12 points (68% to 80%) and strong opposition by 13 points (60% to 73%) after learning the policy would allow anyone who can legally purchase a firearm to carry a loaded gun publicly, along with examples of who those carriers would be.
An Opportunity for Democrats
The results of the survey also show that Miami-Dade voters will vote against candidates who support permitless carry, with over half of voters (53%) saying they are less likely to vote for a candidate in the 2024 election who supports permitless carry and wants to make it law.
Persuadable voters say the same, with a majority of voters registered with no party affiliation (59%), ticket splitters (56%), and Hispanic voters (53%) saying they are less likely to vote for a candidate who backs this change in the gun laws.
Most importantly, a majority of Republicans, DeSantis voters, gun owners (59%), and white voters (55%) oppose permitless carry.
This could open up an opportunity for Democrats who champion gun safety to win back voters in Miami-Dade in 2024.
“In the 2024 elections, Democratic candidates can win in Miami-Dade and compete statewide if they embrace a renewed commitment to preventing gun violence,” says Debbie Mucarsel-Powell, former congressmember and senior advisor, Giffords Florida. “Voters in South Florida overwhelmingly support stronger gun laws and know that the Republican ‘guns everywhere’ agenda is far outside the mainstream.”