Ruger: 'Blue Wave' Didn't Translate To Increased Firearm Sales

With Democrats controlling the House, some speculated–including me–that this may well translate to increased gun sales. After all, if there’s a threat to gun ownership, gun sales go through the roof and with Democrats in power, there’s definitely a threat to gun sales.

However, Ruger’s CEO says that hasn’t happened so far.

The top executive of one of the nation’s largest gun manufacturers on Thursday said an expected sales bump. from the 2018 elections. did not happen, but predicted that interest could rise amid an expected new push in Congress for tighter regulations. on the firearm industry.

“We thought there might be an uptick in demand following the midterm elections. That largely did not occur,” Sturm, Ruger & Co. CEO Christopher Killoy told investors. “We see a lot of things on the political front that may drive demand in the near future.”

With Democrats now in control of the U.S. House of Representatives, the party is expected to try to advance long-sought gun control measures that Republicans previously blocked.

There are multiple reasons for that.

For one, gun people aren’t stupid. They know the likelihood of any measure passed by the House getting through the Senate is about the same as a donut going bad at Amy Schumer’s house. They’re not panic buying because there’s absolutely no chance of them needing to buy.

Then there’s also the possibility that it’s just Ruger that’s not seeing an uptick in sales. Perhaps other companies are selling like there’s no tomorrow. Ruger is a company with a pretty good reputation, but maybe they’re just not what’s selling at gun stores these days.

I kind of doubt that one’s the case.

Then, of course, there’s the possibility that no one on our side of the discussion on our gun rights wants to consider, but I have to mention it lest I appear way too biased, and that’s the possibility that people have changed their mind on guns following a span that saw three major mass shootings ending with Parkland.

That may well have changed more minds than many of us like to think when it comes to guns, and now people aren’t interested in purchasing firearms regardless of what Congress may or may not do.

I don’t think that’s the case either, but it needs to be part of our discussions.

Personally, I suspect that there’s just not enough of a threat to the Second Amendment to trigger a buying frenzy like we saw leading up to the 2016 elections. While initial polling indicated support for gun control, that’s settling down as we speak, which means any destroyed interest in buying guns is sure to evaporate as well given sufficient time.

I’m sure that’s not exactly good news for companies like Ruger, though. Their profits are dropping not just from decreased sales, but steel tariffs are also reportedly having a negative impact on profits.

Still, I suspect that in the long run, companies like Ruger are going to be just fine, but it won’t be a fun road for them for the near future.

Sep 28, 2021 2:30 PM ET