Over the recent months, we’ve written a lot of stories about how there are a ton of new gun buyers out there. After all, each month seems to set another record for most gun sales we’ve ever seen. Further, with the election just days away, there’s no reason to imagine that will slow down before then, now is there?
However, what about the most anti-gun state in the nation?
Well, it seems they’ve seen a whole lot of new gun owners as well.
Handgun sales in California have risen to unprecedented levels during the COVID-19 pandemic, and experts say first-time buyers are driving the trend.
The FBI conducted 462,000 background checks related to handgun purchases in California from March through September, an increase of 209,000, or 83%, from the same period last year. That’s more than in any other seven-month period on record.
People who study gun ownership think the increase means more people are buying guns for the first time. Handguns, as opposed to rifles and shotguns, are often the first firearm purchase made by someone looking for protection.
Background checks related to long gun or other gun sales also rose statewide, by 110,000, or 54%, from March through September compared with the same period in 2019. While that increase is steep, it does not match the rise in long gun sales seen in California during periods, often following mass shootings, when state leaders have considered legislation to sharply rein in access to military-style assault rifles.
I think they’ll also find, if they bother to look, that most of those long gun sales also went to new gun owners as well.
These join the estimated 4.2 million other gun owners in California. This makes for a considerable dent in the almost 21 million registered voters in the state as well. In fact, it makes up a quarter of that electorate.
That might just start making a difference in how Californians vote when it comes to gun rights.
After all, a lot of them learned the hard way that the rhetoric about how lax the gun laws are is absolute nonsense. How many tried to order a gun off the internet and found out that, contrary to what the media has told them, they can’t? How many found out that they couldn’t buy a gun and take it home that day, even as lockdowns loomed ever closer? A lot.
Some of them may not have ever actually managed to buy a gun, either, which means they’re outside the number of estimated gun owners, but they also remember how they were lied to by the media and anti-gun politicians.
The question then becomes just how many of them will remember that and have it change how they vote? After all, these guns were often bought by people who supported the same measures they ran face-first into. Will it change their voting in any way? While I don’t think California is in danger of turning red, I think you might start seeing a few more moderate Democrats winning in places that are typically the domain of the far left.
Who knows, though? If California can push their Democrats to be more moderate on things like guns, the national party might follow suit.
Just don’t hold your breath on it.