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US stocks up on semi-automatic rifles

Obama menaces right to bear Kalashnikovs

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US gun dealers are enjoying a boom in sales of semi-automatic rifles amid fears that Barack Obama may clamp down on selling certain firearms once he's settled into the White House, Reuters reports.

David Greenberg, owner of the splendidly-named Second Amendment Family Gun Shop, in Bisbee, Arizona, told the news agency: "The day after the election, I had many more calls than usual from people looking for semi-automatic rifles. There seems to be a fear they will be banned, and it's fairly likely. Obama and Biden are driven to eliminate firearms from the face of the country."

Tony Aeschliman, spokesman for the National Shooting Sports Foundation, said: "Gun owners are afraid of what Obama is going to do as far as guns. He has a clear record of being against us."

Houston gun store owner Jim Pruett, whose sales "more than tripled on the Saturday before the election to $35,000", chipped in with: "It's always been the liberal or Democratic agenda to restrict gun ownership."

Dealer Steve Sechler of McPherson, Kansas, conformed that "demand at a gun show last weekend jumped by more than 50 percent as buyers rushed to stock up on guns including Kalashnikov and AR-15 rifles". He noted: "Most of the people there were cussing Obama and saying we need home defense."

While Obama "stated his support for the right to bear arms" during his electoral campaign, he and his right hand man Joe Biden are in favour of a ban on assault weapons and "common sense measures" to keep firearms out of the reach of children and criminals.

The Democratic governor of Ohio, Ted Strickland, told a rally last month he'd "spoken directly to Obama about the right to bear arms", and assured: "If you are a sportsman, if you are a gun owner, if you are someone that honors and respects the Second Amendment, you have nothing to fear from Barack Obama."

The National Rifle Association is unsurprisingly having none of it, and has described Obama a "serious threat to Second Amendment liberties". ®

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