Student Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award

Spring 5-18-2022

Document Type


Degree Name

B.A. with honors

Honors Designation


Program of Study

Political Science



First Advisor

Alan DiGaetano


The majority has supported gun control policies in the U.S. for decades, but these policies have stayed unimplemented. While much progress has been made on research of this “gun control paradox” at the federal level, determining whether this dynamic towards gun control persists amongst state governments has seen next to none. Previously, this was due to lack of polling data to estimate public opinion among state populations. However, today, new resources have become available that allow for reliable estimates to be made. This study uses the disaggregation of national polling data on gun control from the past decade to determine the congruence and responsiveness of six state governments to gun control. This research finds evidence that suggests that the gun control paradox exists in many U.S. states due to a majority of the researched states displaying low congruence and responsiveness.



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