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Guns Sales Soar on NRA's "Obama Conspiracy"

Brady Campaign: "Incredibly Ironic" that NRA opposes Obama

Common Dreams staff

Gun proponents who argued that Barack Obama would be "the most anti-gun president in American history" succeeded in driving up gun sales and the number of gun dealers by 3,000 during the president's term in office, despite a lack of any new gun control legislation.

An analysis by The Associated Press released Friday shows that gun sales are increasing, major gun company stock prices are up and "gun manufacturers can't make guns fast enough," report Eileen Sullivan and Jack Gillum of The Associated Press.

As of October 2012, there were 50,812 retail gun dealers—3,303 more than in 2009, the AP reported.

Sturm Ruger & Co. Inc. and Smith & Wesson represent nearly 30 percent of the U.S. gun manufacturing industry, according to the AP. Ruger's sales have increased 86 percent since the beginning of Obama's term, with Smith & Wesson's up nearly 44 percent.

Support for the NRA has also increased, with the lobbying giant "bursting with cash and political clout," according to the AP.

"The driver is President Obama. He's the best thing that ever happened to the firearm industry," said Jim Barrett, an industry analyst at C.L. King & Associates Inc. in New York.

All this makes it "incredibly ironic" that the gun lobby opposes Obama, Dan Gross of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence told the AP. Still, Gross said Obama has done "disappointingly little" on gun control.

Nevertheless, Ian Millhiser of ThinkProgress reports that National Rifle Association CEO Wayne LaPierre said in February that the financials do not mean Obama is good for the Second Amendment, and called the 2012 elections "the most dangerous in our lifetime."

LaPierre spoke of a "massive Obama conspiracy to deceive voters and hide his true intentions to destroy the Second Amendment in this country," Millhiser wrote.

The NRA endorsed Mitt Romney for president, even though Romney signed a permanent ban on assault rifles when he was governor of Massachusetts, Millhiser pointed out.

"If they were serious about boosting gun sales, however, they'd be eager to keep the target of their paranoia campaign in the White House," he wrote.

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