Through proposed restrictions on certain types of firearms as well as his pick to lead the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, there is no mistaking President Joe Biden’s intent to impose stricter gun control laws during his time in office.
As a result, however, records show a near-record level of guns were sold in the U.S. last month. The Washington Examiner recently reported on the development, dubbing Biden the “gun salesman-in-chief.”
According to the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), which represents firearms manufacturers and sellers, approximately 1.3 million new guns were purchased in June. That marks the second-highest total for any June on records, surpassed only by the previous year when sales were fueled by pandemic lockdowns and widespread civil unrest.
The NSSF derives its figures from a variety of data points, most significantly the number of FBI background checks conducted prior to firearms sales.
Of course, The Reload noted that these figures are not entirely accurate. Checks can be conducted for purposes other than gun sales and do not account for multiple firearms sold in a single transaction.
Furthermore, such background checks are typically not performed on licensed concealed carriers or in private sales between individuals.
The outlet nevertheless determined that the increased level of sales could represent a “new normal,” given that firearms sales have been at consistently high levels for more than a year.
Meanwhile, the Associated Press revealed that the level of would-be buyers who are denied a gun as a result of the federal background check is also on the rise. Last year saw a record 300,000 rejections with the most common cause said to be a prior felony. State-level factors including domestic violence charges and so-called “red flag” laws also contributed to the total.
Although the surge in gun sales began early last year, there is little doubt that Biden’s policies on the issue have fueled the continuing trend.
The president has announced efforts to expand background checks, ban certain semi-automatic rifles, strictly limit other guns, and impose restrictions on the Second Amendment.
Arguably the most notable cause for immediate concern is Biden’s nomination of former ATF agent David Chipman to lead the agency. Chipman is an outspoken proponent of gun control and has been open about his desire to drastically restrict gun ownership.
According to the Examiner, NSSF spokesman Mark Oliva issued a recent statement denouncing these federal actions, asserting: “It cannot be discounted that the continued elevated level of increased firearm purchases is driven, in part, by the gun control overtures of the Biden administration. As we head into Independence Day, Americans are exercising their right to keep and bear arms in record numbers even as the Biden administration is throwing up roadblocks to keep that from happening.”