DENVER — Sales of handguns, rifles and ammunition have surged in the last week, according to gun store owners around the nation who describe a wave of buyers concerned that an Obama administration will curtail their right to bear arms.
“He’s a gun-snatcher,” said Jim Pruett, owner of Jim Pruett’s Guns and Ammo in northwest Houston, which was packed with shoppers on Thursday.
“He wants to take our guns from us and create a socialist society policed by his own police force,” added Mr. Pruett, a former radio personality, of President-elect Barack Obama.
Mr. Pruett said that sales last Saturday, just before Election Day, ran about seven times higher than a typical good Saturday.
A spot check by reporters in four other states easily found Mr. Pruett’s comments echoed from both sides of the counter.
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David Nelson, a co-owner of Montana Ordnance & Supply in Missoula, Mont., said his buyers were “awake and aware and see a dangerous trend.”
Mr. Nelson said sales at his store had risen about 30 percent since Mr. Obama declared his candidacy. “People are concerned about overreaching legislation from Washington,” he said. “They are educating themselves on the Internet.”
In Colorado, would-be gun buyers set a one-day record last Saturday with the highest number of background check requests in a 24-hour period, according to figures from the Colorado Bureau of Investigation.
“We’re not really sure who is promoting the concept that a change in federal administrations might affect firearms possession rights,” said an agency spokesman, Lance Clem, “but we do know that it’s increased business considerably.”