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Big Guns or Big Talk? How the National Rifle Association Matters for Conceal Carry Weapons Laws

NCJ Number
253413
Date Published
2018
Length
25 pages
Author(s)
Trent Steidley
Agencies
NIJ-Sponsored
Publication Type
Research (Applied/Empirical), Report (Study/Research), Report (Grant Sponsored), Program/Project Description
Grant Number(s)
2014-R2-CX-0004
Annotation
Since the power of the National Rifle Association (NRA) to influence policy is often assumed but seldom tested, the current study drew on social movement and political-sociological theories of policy change to assess NRA influence on state-level firearm policy outcomes, using the case of concealed carry weapons (CCW) laws.
Abstract
Social movement organizations (SMOs) often aim to influence society through policy change; however, policy change may be the result of public opinion, political opportunities, or other factors, thus creating a spurious relationship between SMO activity and policy outcomes. Using event-history analyses, the current study found that the NRA does influence CCW laws, but its effect is mediated by public opinion, political ideologies, competitive elections, and political opportunities. Issue-specific public opinion and political ideologies also interact with one another to influence CCW laws. These findings build upon a growing literature that illustrates how SMOs interact with political contexts to generate policy change. (publisher abstract modified)
Date Created: July 20, 2021