Katie LaPotin, Red Alert Politics, December 28, 2012
It looks like National Rifle Association (NRA) Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre didn’t completely ruin the image of the nation’s largest pro-gun advocacy group with his train-wreck press conference and appearance on Meet the Press last week.
A new Gallup study found that a majority of Americans – 54 percent – continue to have a favorable opinion of the NRA, which is only down slightly from its high of 60 percent in 2005.
In addition, as our sister outlet the Washington Examiner previously pointed out, the number of Americans with a very favorable opinion of the NRA – 21 percent – is the highest its been since before the assault weapons ban was signed into law in 1994.
While the organization remains a polarizing lightening rod between Republicans and Democrats alike, a small majority of independents have a favorable opinion of the NRA.
Not all of the news from the study was good for the NRA, however. While 45 percent of Americans own guns, a quarter of them do not have a favorable opinion of the organization. The study also found that a majority of Americans do not usually agree with the organization’s stances on second amendment issues, a finding that was the same regardless of whether or not the respondent owned a gun.
The Gallup study of 1,038 adults was conducted December 19-22, roughly the same time period in which LaPierre held his press conference and appeared on Meet the Press. Gallup commissioned the survey to see if the organization’s image changed in light of the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. earlier this month.