Gallup: 61% Own Guns for Personal Protection

By Michael W. Chapman | September 17, 2019 | 1:44pm EDT

( -- A new survey shows that 61% of America's gun owners possess a firearm for presonal safety/protection. In addition, the survey found that 48% have a "favorable" view of the National Rifle Association (NRA) and 49% have an "unfavorable" view.  The poll has a margin of error of +/- 3 percentage points.

In the survey, Gallup found that 32% of American adults personally own a gun. That's approximately 81 million American adults.

Gallup asked, "There are many reasons why some people choose to own guns and others do not. What are some of the reasons why you own a gun? [OPEN-ENDED]"


In response, 61% they owned a gun for "personal safety/protection." Thirty-four said they owned a firearm for "hunting," and only 5% for "target shooting."

Gallup also asked, "What is your overall opinion of the National Rifle Association, also known as the NRA -- is it very favorable, mostly favorable, mostly unfavorable or very unfavorable?"

Forty-eight percent said "favorable" and 49% said "unfavorable," essentially dead even. 

The Aug. 15-30 poll was conducted after the mass shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio that same month. 

"Only once in Gallup's trend have opinions of the NRA been worse than now," reported the survey firm.  "In 1995, 51% had a negative opinion and 42% had a positive opinion of the group."


"In Gallup's 11 readings on the NRA, an average of 53% have rated it favorably and 39% unfavorably," said the polling group. 

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