Gun sales in Florida skyrocketed in November and they continue to climb in the days leading up to Christmas. As Whitney Ray tells us, fear that President-Elect Barack Obama will push tougher gun laws, is making it hard for gun dealers to keep certain firearms on the shelf.
Business is good for pawn shop owner Mark Folmer, at least in his gun department. The store’s gun sales rose 40 percent last month. Mark said people are driven by fear.
“It’s always understood that the Republican is going to support gun rights, there’s always a question as to whether the Democrat will,” said Mark.
Requests for criminal background checks on would-be-gun owners began pouring into the Florida Department of Law Enforcement in mid-October.
“This election season, you know, we did see almost double the number of criminal history checks,” said Kristen Perezluha, FDLE Spokeswoman.
FDLE ran background checks on 64-thousand anxious gun shoppers in November, that’s up from 37-thousand last November. The National Rifle Association is taking notice.
The NRA campaigned heavily against Obama, but declined our interview to talk about the increased sales, calling the issue too volatile. Obama vows to bring back the ban on assault weapons that expired in 2004. People are heeding the warning. Mark’s pawn shop only has one assault rifle left on the shelf.
“We have some people that fear they won’t be able to own certain types of guns in the future with an Obama administration,” said Mark.
The economy may also play a role in the increased gun buying. Dealers say they’re seeing more people buying guns to protect their property from robbers. The president-elect also plans to close loopholes that allow people to buy guns at gun shows without a background check.