Pro-gun policies, NRA may undercut GOP Latino outreach

Republican opposition to gun control measures may damage the party amongst Latino voters, even as the party works to rebuild its image amongst the country’s fastest-growing voter block.

Just 18% of Latinos own guns, making them less likely than any other racial demographic to own a firearm, and they value gun rights less than any other demographic, according to a February Gallup poll. An April 2012 poll found that 57% of white voters ranked gun rights over that of gun ownership, as opposed to 29% of Latinos who ranked gun rights over gun ownership.

“Community violence and gun violence is something that has a deep impact within the Latino community, Latinos are about seven times more likely to die at the hands of a gun,” explained Jennifer Ng’andu, the director of health and civil rights at National Council of La Raza. “It’s hard to say if this is a swing issue for any community, but what I know is that people have very strong, visceral reactions about how they want to preserve community safety.”

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