2022 Midterm Elections:
The Good & The Bad


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The vaunted red wave wasn’t a tsunami, but it was “just enough” to at least break up a unified government. Although it took until Nov. 16 to confirm, a slim Republican majority in the U.S. House of Representatives is better than being in the minority. The best-case scenario in the Senate is an even 50–50 split — but with Vice President Kamala Harris serving as the tie-breaking vote, Democrats will maintain their majority. The final breakdown in the Senate won’t be known until after Dec. 6, with a Georgia runoff election once again having the final say on the balance of power in the Senate, à la 2020. (The results of the Georgia runoff will be confirmed after press time on this issue.)

While the firearms industry can certainly breathe a sigh of relief that President Biden’s anti-gun agenda is set to stall in Congress, there are other tools at his disposal to make targeted attacks against the industry. We’ll examine the good and bad from the 2022 midterm election cycle.

The Good

With Republicans flipping the House, bills like the so-called Assault Weapons Ban and Equal Access to Justice for Victims of Gun Violence Act (which would repeal the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act) have little to no chance of advancing in the 118th Congress.

Mark Oliva, NSSF managing director of public affairs, shared how a Republican-led House will benefit the firearms industry.

“NSSF is pleased to see pro-firearm legislators are now the majority of the U.S. House of Representatives. This will serve as a check on the Executive Branch and provide the much-needed oversight of firearm-related issues,” he said. “President Joe Biden’s anti-gun agenda will be met with skepticism by those legislators who still believe in the lawful ownership of firearms.”

Speaking of oversight, a Republican-led House can provide a check on the president’s influence over the ATF.

“We believe there are questions about the ATF’s zero-tolerance policy that must be answered,” Oliva continued. “The policy of revoking federal firearms licenses for minor administrative errors is not the best use of ATF’s limited resources to prevent crime. The firearms industry expects the Department of Justice to finalize the proposed rule on pistol braces. It will likely get closely scrutinized by the U.S. House as the proposed language attempted to unilaterally redefine classes of firearms. That’s the role of Congress, not departments within the Executive Branch.”

Oliva expressed optimism the House will at least take a look at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Final Rule that published Sept. 16. It opened 18 national wildlife refuges for new hunting and fishing opportunities — but banned the use of traditional ammunition.

“We expect the U.S. House of Representatives will ask questions of this administration of recently passed Final Rules regarding public land access for hunting and the pending bans on traditional ammunition that lacks any scientific evidence of harm to wildlife populations,” he said.

Finally, Oliva pointed out one of the hallmarks of a divided government.

“This is a divided Congress and divided government. Historically, that means gridlock for Washington, D.C. That also means the White House has little chance of muscling through their radical gun control agenda. NSSF will continue to seek opportunities to ensure the interests of the firearm and ammunition industry, and their customers, are represented,” he concluded.

“This is a divided Congress and divided government. Historically, that means gridlock for Washington, D.C. That also means the White House has little chance of muscling through their radical gun control agenda.”

Mike Oliva, NSSF Managing Director
Public Affairs

The Bad

On the other side of the coin, a continued majority in the upper chamber of Congress means President Biden will be able to carry on nominating federal judges. As of mid-November, according to Ballotpedia, 85 Biden-appointed judges have been confirmed — and now Democrats have two more years to build on it. (This was an unheralded aspect of Donald Trump’s presidency — he appointed 226 federal judges in four years, equating to more than a quarter of all active federal judges.)

In addition, President Biden has something in his arsenal that doesn’t need approval from Congress: executive orders. Alan Gottlieb, executive VP of the Second Amendment Foundation, is especially weary of this potential threat. 

“With Joe Biden’s midterm election defeat and losing control of the House of Representatives, he now poses an even greater threat to the right of American citizens to keep and bear arms,” he argued. “Because of the election’s outcome the odds are good he’ll begin attacking gun owners by weaponizing executive orders and bypassing Congress completely. We’ve never seen a president so determined to undermine the Second Amendment and destroy the cornerstone of our Bill of Rights.”

Adam Kraut, executive director of the Second Amendment Foundation, echoed Gottlieb’s perspective.

“With the Republicans taking control of the House, Biden’s ability to use Congress as a means to implement his anti-gun agenda will no longer be an option once the new session is underway,” he said. “The Biden administration pledged to ban certain guns and make it tougher for people to own handguns and rifles. We expect them to stay true to their word by resorting to executive actions and weaponizing administrative agencies like the ATF, bypassing Congress entirely, in order to pursue its agenda.”

2024 Election Cycle Already Underway

It remains to be seen whether the good from the 2022 election cycle ultimately outweighs the bad for the firearms industry, but there’s one thing we know for sure: the 2024 election cycle is already underway. Trump officially launched his 2024 presidential campaign just as the 2022 election cycle’s impact was still being analyzed.

Presidential election years have historically been banner years for the industry, so even if 2023 represents a step back in terms of demand and increased discount-buying from consumers — chances are good things will roar back in 2024.

SK Guns Changes Lives Through “SK Gives Back”

SK Guns, through its SK Gives Back initiative, is providing support to a variety of non-profits. By regularly donating firearms to organizations committed to enhancing personal growth and development opportunities, the program gives back to those in need on a local and national level.

“We’re not only in the business of providing collectible firearms –– we’re a company that deeply cares for others,” said Simon Khiabani, owner and founder of SK Guns. “With our amazing partners, we can reach those in need and better the shooting sports, military veteran and firearm communities. Each of the philanthropic organizations we have partnered with is shaping countless lives, and SK Guns is honored to be a part of that initiative.”

SK Arms launched the SK Gives Back initiative in 2020. It has supported and provided firearms for fundraising purposes to a number of programs, including: the DC Project, Kids and Clays, Purple Heart Homes, Purple Heart Integration Project and Scholastic Shooting Sports Foundation.

/ skguns.com

Fiocchi USA To Develop Lead-Free Primer Facility

Fiocchi has announced the selection of a 281-acre site in the Port of Little Rock, Ark., for a new ammunition primer manufacturing facility, expanding its operations presence in Little Rock. Representing a $41.5 million investment and a 120-person workforce expansion, the new production operation will pave the way for future growth in Arkansas and provide much-needed primer supply relief for the broader ammunition manufacturing segment.

The new facility will be one of only six primer manufacturing operations in the U.S. and the only dedicated lead-free primer plant in the world.

“This groundbreaking represents another significant milestone in Fiocchi’s long-term plan to strengthen and expand our manufacturing capabilities,” said Maurizio Negro, Fiocchi Group CEO, “and to bolster primer supplies not only for Fiocchi products but also to increase supplies for the ammunition manufacturing industry at large.”

Part of Fiocchi’s ongoing vertical integration strategy, the new primer facility will allow the company to meet internal primer supply needs, focus on its low environmental impact initiatives, and present second-sourcing opportunities for industry contracts.

Fiocchi will begin construction in 2023 and anticipates its first stage of operational capacity of its Little Rock primer manufacturing facility in early 2025. / fiocchiusa.com

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