The Norman Transcript

Nation/World

October 20, 2012

Gun industry thrives during Obama term

WASHINGTON — Tennessee lawyer Brian Manookian says he never considered himself a gun enthusiast. He owns just one handgun and was raised in a gun-free home. But the firearms industry has proven so successful in recent years that he decided to give up practicing law and make guns his livelihood.

It’s a decision that’s put Manookian on track to earn four times what he made as a corporate health care attorney, a job that earned him six figures right out of law school, he said.

And he’s far from alone. An analysis by The Associated Press of data tracking the health of the gun industry shows that President Barack Obama has presided over a heyday for guns.

Sales are on the rise, so much that some manufacturers cannot make enough fast enough. Major gun company stock prices are up. The number of federally licensed, retail gun dealers is increasing for the first time in nearly 20 years. The U.S. gun lobby is bursting with cash and political clout. Washington has expressed little interest in passing new gun laws, despite renewed calls to do so after recent deadly shootings in Colorado and Wisconsin.

Four years ago the gun lobby predicted Obama would be the “most anti-gun president in American history.” Yet it is hard to find a single aspect of the gun world that isn’t thriving.

“The driver is President Obama. He is the best thing that ever happened to the firearm industry,” said Jim Barrett, an industry analyst at C.L. King & Associates Inc. in New York.

Obama has made no pledges to push for new gun control legislation and does not have the support in Congress or among voters even if he did. During this week’s presidential debate, he did suggest renewing a U.S. ban on assault weapons and coming up with an overall strategy to reduce violence. But both Obama and Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney said the real need is for the government to enforce gun laws already on the books.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Nation/World
  • Manufacturers see better times for economy, jobs

    NEW YORK — Companies are finally starting to spend some of the cash they’ve been sitting on, and that could mean a stronger economy and more jobs are on the way. Industrial companies such as General Electric, Honeywell and Caterpillar ...

    April 25, 2014

  • Oklahoma to have double execution

    OKLAHOMA CITY — Oklahoma plans to hold its first double execution in nearly 80 years, Gov. Mary Fallin said Thursday. The move comes a day after the state Supreme Court ruled late Wednesday that Clayton Lockett and Charles Warner are not ...

    April 25, 2014

  • FDA proposes e-cigarettes regulations

    WASHINGTON — The federal government wants to ban sales of electronic cigarettes to minors and require approval for new products and health warning labels....

    April 25, 2014

  • At mudslide scene, Obama mourns with survivors

    OSO, Wash. — Swooping over a landscape of unspeakable sadness and death, President Barack Obama took an aerial tour Tuesday of the place where more than three dozen people perished in a mudslide last month. He pledged a nation’s solidarity ...

    April 23, 2014

  • GM, lawyers fight over protections

    DETROIT — General Motors Co. and a battalion of trial lawyers are preparing for an epic court fight over whether GM is liable for the sins of its corporate past. The company is asking a U.S. bankruptcy court to shield it from legal claims ...

    April 23, 2014

  • Boston Marathon One year after tragedy, 32,000 run Boston Marathon

    BOSTON — Some ran to honor the dead and wounded. Others were out to prove something to the world about their sport, the city or their country. And some wanted to prove something to themselves....

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Festivities, tight security before race

    BOSTON — In many ways, it felt like any other pre-marathon Sunday in Boston....

    April 21, 2014

  • Boston race makes room for those affected by bombs

    BOSTON — “I need to run.” The messages started arriving just hours after the bombings, pleading for an entry into the 2014 Boston Marathon. For months the calls and emails continued, runners begging for an opportunity to cross the finish ...

    April 21, 2014

  • Documents detail another delayed GM recall for failed power steering

    DETROIT — General Motors waited years to recall nearly 335,000 Saturn Ions for power steering failures despite getting thousands of consumer complaints and more than 30,000 warranty repair claims, according to government documents released ...

    April 20, 2014

  • Landslide devouring part of Wyoming town

    JACKSON, Wyo. — A slow-motion disaster continued unfolding in the Wyoming resort town of Jackson on Saturday, as a creeping landslide that split a hillside home threatened to swallow up more houses and businesses. The ground beneath the ...

    April 20, 2014