Presidential elections have a lot of interesting effects, aside from some of the obvious ones like getting a new commander-in-chief. Among others, presidential elections also happen to be a big boost for the gun industry, as they have been moving a lot of merchandise around election time.
Obama a huge friend to the gun lobby
Around 2008, murmurs and musings abounded that president-elect Barack Obama was, once in office, going to “take people’s guns away.” The NRA, according to Bloomberg, certainly advanced that idea and is currently at it again, with one of it’s chief executives claiming “a massive Obama conspiracy” that will “destroy the Second Amendment-during his second term.”
As it turned out, of course, he had bigger fish in mind for frying and the election turned into the biggest sales pitch for the firearms industry since Clint Eastwood practically turned the “Dirty Harry” films into a series of Smith and Wesson commercials. According to a CNN article from 2008, the Federal Bureau of Investigation received 374,000 requests for background checks from firearms dealers from Nov. 3 to Nov. 9, 2008, alone, 49 percent more than in that week of Nov. 2007.
Good times still rolling
According to Time magazine, gun sales went up 39 percent again in 2009. However, they dipped in most of 2010, according to the Wall Street Journal, before rebounding going into 2011. In December 2011, according to Fox News, 19 consecutive months of increased background check requests were logged by the FBI, including the single-day record of 129,166 on “Black Friday,” or Nov. 25, the day after Thanksgiving.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the upward climb continues, as it is an election year. The FBI received 21 percent more background check requests in May than in May 2011 and total requests for background checks are up 20 percent from this time in 2011.
The National Shooting Sports Foundation, a trade group for the gun making industry, reports a 30 percent increase in jobs among its members, according to McClatchy DC. NSSF member companies in Kansas alone reported adding 1,202 jobs in 2011, contributing $177 million to the state’s economy. Sales are reported by some NSSF members to have increased by 40 percent or more in the past few years.
Zombies also credited
People within gun industry are reported, according to Time magazine, to refer to President Obama as the “salesman of the year.” However, another curious driver of sales is zombies and the portended “Zombie Apocalypse.”
Various zombie-related films and other media have spurred a modern-day zombie craze and since zombie films often involve mass shootings of said undead, a number of zombie-related gun products are available. For instance, Hornady, a leading ammunition manufacturer, makes a line of bullets called Z-MAX, with the “Z” standing for “zombie.” There are even shooting competitions involving zombie targets. Perhaps sales will be bolstered not only by the election, but also by season 3 of “The Walking Dead” premiering in September.
Wall Street Journal: http://online.wsj.com/article/BT-CO-20120614-708987.html
McClatchy DC: http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2012/04/26/146907/firearms-industry-jobs-up-30-percent.html