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Politics

Here’s Where The 2020 Democratic Candidates Stand On Guns

Throughout the 2020 campaign, Guns & America will be tracking policy proposals made by candidates for president.
Luis Melgar
/
Guns & America
Throughout the 2020 campaign, Guns & America will be tracking policy proposals made by candidates for president.

Polling shows guns are among the top priorities for many Democratic voters and gun issues remain a big topic in the 2020 Democratic presidential primary.


The candidates spent precious minutes talking about their gun-related proposals during the first round of debates. Gun control groups spent big — and won big — in the 2018 midterms, including in a few key races that helped Democrats retake control of the U.S. House of Representatives.

Throughout the 2020 campaign, Guns & America will be tracking policy proposals made by candidates for president.

Where The Candidates Stand

Most of the Democratic candidates have published proposals for reducing gun violence. Many support universal background checks, bans on “assault weapons” and Extreme Risk Protection Order laws, also known as “red flag” laws.

So far 12 candidates have made their gun-related policies publicly available.

This interactive shows whether the Democratic candidates have published policy proposals meant to reduce gun violence.


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Methodology

The information was gathered by Guns & America reporters using candidates' websites, campaign social media accounts and news reports.

The original images of candidates, sourced from campaigns and the public domain, were modified.

This interactive includes the 20 candidates campaigning to be the 2020 Democratic presidential nominee included in the July 30 and 31, 2019, debates in accordance with DNC rules. Four candidates — Rep. Seth Moulton, Mayor Wayne Messam, Tom Steyer and former Rep. Joe Sestak — did not qualify for the debate and have not been included in our analysis.

Although not available on his website, Beto O'Rourke's campaign website references an op-ed published in the Houston Chronicle as his official gun policy. In contrast, Gov. Steve Bullock published an op-ed in the Great Falls Tribune in 2018, prior to announcing his campaign for president, where he outlines his stance on guns.


With reporting from Adhiti Bandlamudi, Alana Wise, Anthony Cave, Chris Haxel, Heath Druzin, Leigh Paterson, Matt Richmond, Ryan Lindsay, Lisa Dunn and Jeremy Bernfeld.

Guns & America is a public media reporting project on the role of guns in American life.

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