Most Utah voters oppose using financial pressure against gun manufacturers

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Utah voters don’t look favorably on using the nation’s banking system to reduce firearm sales via restrictions on gunmakers getting financing, a new Analytics poll shows.

Harming the firearm-makers’ ability to get loans from commercial banks is apparently going too far for Utah voters, who by and large have supported — on some questions with huge majorities — various gun control measures as surveyed by Y2 over the last month:

— 44 percent “strongly oppose” or “oppose” removing federally-guaranteed insurance for banks that provide services to the firearms industry.

— 31 percent of voters support that action.

— While 24 percent neither support nor oppose it.

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On another question, should bank regulators pressure financial institutions to not deal or support gun-makers, Utah voters are even more opposed:

— 54 percent say regulators shouldn’t take such action.

— Only 23 percent want bank regulators to apply such pressure on gun-makers.

— And 23 percent take no stand on that issue.

One group, Guns Down America, has started a rating system on banks’ operations with gun manufacturers, and have published their findings.

It is an effort to pressure banks and credit unions to not deal with gun-makers or identified supporters of gun sales, like the National Rifle Association.

Once again, men feel differently on these questions of financial pressure on gun-makers than do women:

— Men oppose the FDIC removing insurance on bank deposits, 53-27 percent.

— While women are split, 35 percent opposed and 36 percent in favor, an 18-percentage point difference in opposition.

And on the question of whether bank regulators should pressure financial institutions to not deal with gun-makers, men are opposed 66-17 percent, while women are opposed, 42-28 percent, a 24-percentage point difference.

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As you may expect, “strong” Republicans really dislike the idea of the federal government putting pressure on banks to not deal with gun-makers — with the opposition numbers above 70 percent.

Political independents also disapprove of such actions, over 50 percent on both questions.

But “strong” Democrats see it differently, with over 60 percent on both questions supporting such actions.

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Utah legislators don’t insure or really regulate federally-charted banks, which are the largest of the financial institutions in Utah.

So, neither the Legislature nor GOP Gov. Gary Herbert could do any of those things — which they wouldn’t likely do even if they had the power.

However, as’s recent polling on gun control has shown, there is support — in some cases over 70 percent of voters — for legislators to take up some gun control measures, like universal background checks on gun sales, a 3-day waiting period on gun ownership, and greater action aimed at getting guns out of the hands of mentally disturbed individuals.

GOP legislative leaders and Herbert tell that they expect a number of gun control bills to be introduced in the 2020 Legislature’s general session, which starts the end of January.