The recent slowdown in gun sales reversed last month, likely the result of new threats from President Joe Biden to ban some guns and tax others, according to industry officials.
After record-setting sales turned slightly lower last year, January saw a 6.5% spike in FBI gun sales background checks, according to new data.
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Sellers told Secrets that increased sales are being driven by Biden’s threats and a jump in random shootings, especially in big cities. That has pushed up sales of concealable firearms and the filling up of concealed carry permit classes.
“The result is these folks are buying before the government bans them,” said Justin Anderson, the marketing director for Hyatt Guns of Charlotte, North Carolina, one of the nation’s largest. “Our concealed carry classes are filling up quickly, which is a strong indicator of future sales.”
The National Shooting Sports Foundation, the industry trade group, estimated sales last month at 1,268,236 based on background checks.
“That indicates that the appetite for lawful firearm ownership continues to be a priority for the American public,” spokesman Mark Oliva said. “This also marked the 42nd month in a row that background checks have exceeded 1 million in a single month. This is notable given the anti-gun sentiment by certain governors and members of Congress who ignore these trends and, instead of focusing on reducing crime, holding criminals accountable, and making their communities safer, only focus on instituting roadblocks and denying the rights of those who obey the law. Americans, by the millions each month, are taking ownership of their Second Amendment rights.”
That was apparent at the opening Saturday of the annual Great American Outdoors Show in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The massive show, hosted by the National Rifle Association, attracted 33,000 people on the first day of the nine-day event.
“We have a great show,” NRA President Charles Cotton told Secrets.
NRA First Vice President Willes Lee walked the floor of the event at the sprawling Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex and Expo Center, tweeting, ”NRA Great American Outdoor Show this week. 33k+ patriots first day. Freedom alive in Harrisburg.”
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The show features a massive gun room filled with major gun-makers as well as outfitters, a fishing and archery room, and acres of camping equipment distributors.
The show and higher gun sales came as Biden is pushing for a ban on popular semi-automatic weapons and after the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives ruled that the popular AR-style pistol will now require approval from Washington. New buyers will have to pay a $200 tax. The millions with them will have to file registration papers.