“Journalist” Can’t Decide: Slumping Gun Sales or Best Year Ever?


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“Journalist” Can't Decide: Slumping Gun Sales or Best Year Ever?

Fairfax, VA – -(Ammoland.com)- Right on the eve of the annual Shooting, Hunting, and Outdoor Trade (SHOT) Show in Las Vegas, Associated Press reporter Lisa Marie Pane wrote an article titled, “Gun industry gathers amid slumping sales, rising tensions.” But it seems as though the AP and their reporter were more concerned with promoting an agenda than accurately reporting the news or reviewing readily available data.

The story was published by the AP on January 19th, picked up by ABC News on the same day, and reproduced in various other national and local outlets in the following days.

The opening paragraph references “slumping sales,” and later paragraphs expound on the reasons and impact of this supposed downturn. The author also makes sure to gratuitously proclaim that the SHOT show is being held “about 3 miles (4.8 kilometers) from the deadliest mass shooting modern U.S. history” [sic].

Slumping firearm sales? Really?

Pane’s half-cocked story came out about two weeks after The Washington Examiner published “Record gun sales checks in 2019, NICS at all-time high: FBI” and after The Hill published an article titled, “2019 gun sale background checks highest since system launch in 1998.”

NICS checks are not a mystery or a Friday afternoon news dump; detailed reports are issued monthly. In early December, MarketWatch published a piece titled “Gun-purchase background checks on track for record high in 2019.” Similar articles were run in other outlets.

Even the Associated Press itself ran such an article, published on December 3rd of last year and also picked up by ABC News on that same day.

The author?

You guessed it: Lisa Marie Pane, the same author who wrote the more recent piece alleging slumping sales.

Record-breaking pace or slumping sales? A closer look at the NICS reports can provide some answers.

The FBI reports there were 28,369,750 NICS firearm background checks in 2019 – the most ever.

Now, this number does include permit checks and rechecks but the FBI also provides a breakdown of NICS checks by type.

Last year saw the fourth-highest number of checks for handguns and the sixth-highest year for dealer sales checks ever.

That does not include NICS checks on private sales (41,775 last year) or all dealer sales to permit holders in the 24 states that issue so-called NICS-exempt permits, which can be used as an alternative to the NICS check when purchasing a gun from a licensed dealer.

That means that the number of sales checks may appear artificially low. As the FBI notes in the “NICS Firearm Background Checks: Year by State/Type” report, “Since the permit check is done in place of the NICS check in most of the affected states, the low handgun statistics are often balanced out by a higher number of handgun permit checks.”

In other words, some number of the 3,738,203 permit checks run in NICS exemption states were likely people who ultimately purchased a handgun (or other firearm) with their permits, perhaps even multiple firearms. The overall NICS records do not necessarily account for these permit-based sales. What we do know, however, is that there were a lot of NICS checks for the issuance of NICS-exempt permits.

Another important consideration is that firearms are durable goods – they do not spoil or breakdown, assuming minimal care. Firearms purchased in 2018 still exist. Firearms purchased in the late 90s, when NICS began, still exist. Not every year will be a record-breaking year for sales, and it can be misleading to label any year that doesn’t significantly top the last one as a “slump.”

Maybe Lisa Marie Pane can’t make up her mind, but we’re here to tell you: 2019 was a record-breaking year for sales and permit checks in total. That indicates the American tradition of firearms ownership is as strong and vibrant as ever, and attendees at the 2020 SHOT Show had much to celebrate.

Meanwhile, the National Rifle Association continues to work hard to protect your Second Amendment rights, just as we have for 148 years.

National Rifle Association Institute For Legislative Action (NRA-ILA)


Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the “lobbying” arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Visit: www.nra.org

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SafegunownerGaryRameyKnuteMS-SteveStWayne Recent comment authors
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I was quoted in this article, so I am going to weigh in with some facts. Yes, it was a record year for total NICS checks. Total NICS checks @28,007,320 But those numbers are meaningless. Lisa Marie Pane is correct, the industry is slumping. Here are some facts. The driver of overall NICS is Permit Checks and Re-checks. In fact, they are larger than either Handgun checks or Long Gun checks. If you take out these two factors, the number drops down to 13,199,096. That makes 2019 the 5th highest year. But that is below 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017 It… Read more »


1. She gets paid by the word and/or article.
2. Her storyline draft is copied from another (less reputable) article.
3. The “smelly” winds of change caused her story to take a new direction. I.E. – her hair was blown back by the odoriferous noxious fumes after experiencing “a blast to the face from someone’s keester blast” as she was sniffing around for her next story.


In order to deliver a more potent response, I will play the same game that the left plays. “It’s no wonder Lisa Marie Pane lies when reporting on gun issues. Have you seen her face? Oh my gawd. Even for a lesbian she looks bad. Lying probably started early for her in life just to get her next serving of hypocrite pie. Not only does she remind me of Pete Nocchio in all those commercials, as her teeth expand in direct proportion to her hair style, but so to, do her morals.” See pics here https://www.google.com/search?client=firefox-b-1-d&q=journalist+Lisa+Marie+Pane But that’s only if… Read more »


Another feminist who knows nothing about firearms, yet she is arrogant enough to push her ignorance as “facts.” Gender equality??? this article doesn’t convince me that it is as legitimate concept.


NRA – you remain clueless.
Stay in your lane and focus on what you should be doing, but are NOT doing.
Try defending the 2A.

She presented the facts accurately
Permit Checks and Re-checks are NOT firearm sales.
The numbers posted by Ruger and other companies show a slump in sales.

NICS checks on firearm sales are down.
Permit Re-checks are up.

Because organizations like yours are failing to protect the 2A.
Do your job!

Americans should join GOA.
They don’t give away our rights like the NRA.


Don’t believe you! Sounds like you are on the anti- gun side and acting like a 2A supporter


Unfortunately for you, you are wrong.
Look up the FBI numbers.

I am on the side of honesty.


Speaking of honesty, did you manage to learn the six letter word for a firearm’s dangerous end yet? Or is the most basic of knowledge considered “unsafe” by your standards? 🙂