Arizona -(Ammoland.com)- The National Instant background Check System, (NICS) hit record high levels in August 2019, for both total numbers and numbers of estimated sales after carry permit and permit rechecks were subtracted.
In September 2019, while the totals remain at record levels, the estimated sales fell to 88% of the record set in 2016.
In August, after permit and permit rechecks are subtracted from the total NICS checks, 1,239,014 remain. In 2016, following the same procedure, there were 1,229,022. The 2019 number is about 10,000 more than the record set in 2016.
These numbers are not precise numbers of sales, for several reasons.
The numbers of NICS checks done for carry permits and carry permit rechecks have risen to over half of all NICS checks in recent years. People with carry permits can purchase firearms, using their permit as the background check (the permit already had a check done when it was issued) in 25 states. The total numbers are skewed by Illinois and Kentucky, which do hundreds of thousands of permit rechecks every month.
If a person is purchasing more than one firearm at a time, up to four can be purchased with a single NICS check. A friend of mine just purchased four semi-automatic rifles for his daughters to learn to shoot on. Those four will count for one check. His daughters will be given a rifle as they show responsibility and proficiency.
There are significant numbers of pre-owned firearms that are traded in at gun shops or gun shows. Those firearms require a NICS check when they are resold. They do not increase the number of privately owned firearms in the country, but they count as a NICS check.
The strong increase in NICS checks is almost certainly tied to the Democrats pushing for more infringements on the Second Amendment, along with President Trump making ambiguous noises to string them along, and several weak-kneed Republicans who are attempting to curry favor with the media.
Presidential Candidate Beto O'Rourke bumped the numbers in September with his talk of confiscation of modern sporting rifles, in spite of their minimal use in homicides.
The nation has been at a fairly consistent plateau, or new normal since 2012. It appears a significant number of new gun owners were created during the first term of the President Obama regime. The nearly eight years of firearm sales since have shown fairly consistent numbers.
Prices are still good for AR-15 rifles, AR-15 part kits, and materials to make your own receivers. There is a move in several states to ban the kits and tools used to make your own guns. It seems blatantly unconstitutional, but the Supreme Court has been avoiding the issue for some years now.
We may see a difference next week, when the court should announce whether it will hold the latest Second Amendment case, NYSR&PA v NYC, moot, after NY City changed their law in a desperate move to stop the Court from considering the case.
The impeachment circus happening in the House of Representatives is likely to keep sales up in October. It appears President Trump's first term will exceed the firearms sales generated by President Obama in his first term.
President Obama's title as the greatest gun salesman in history may be in jeopardy.
About Dean Weingarten:
Dean Weingarten has been a peace officer, a military officer, was on the University of Wisconsin Pistol Team for four years, and was first certified to teach firearms safety in 1973. He taught the Arizona concealed carry course for fifteen years until the goal of constitutional carry was attained. He has degrees in meteorology and mining engineering, and recently retired from the Department of Defense after a 30-year career in Army Research, Development, Testing, and Evaluation.