Minnesota residents are lining up to obtain gun permits, with an uptick of 6,000 permits last month. Fears over terrorism and President Obama’s recent executive actions on gun control are responsible for the rush, though the Star Tribune added that some of their numbers might be permit renewals. Regardless, there still was a drastic increase in Minnesotans who wish to exercise their Second Amendment rights:
Since the beginning of the new year, there have been at least 221,712 active permit holders — a 6,189 increase from December 2015, according to a monthly data report from the state’s Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA). The largest spike was in March 2013 with 7,213 active permit holders, a few months after the elementary school shooting in Newtown, Conn., and subsequent calls for national gun control measures.
A similar pattern of jumps in permit holders and applications are typically seen after prominent mass shootings, including the November Paris terrorist attacks and the December killings in San Bernardino, Calif.
Almost in reflex, there’s a run on ammunition, gun sale background checks increase, interest in and enrollment in permit classes go up, and more people get their permits, said Andrew Rothman, president of the Gun Owners Civil Rights Alliance (GOCRA), which released the report Thursday.
“It’s not always a reaction to mass shootings, although there is some of that,” Rothman said. “But probably the bigger part is the reaction when people hear about the political rhetoric following a horrible murder … that’s what gets people very interested in exercising their rights.”
The number of active carry permits in the state has grown by more than 20,000 in six months. Now, about one in 19 eligible Minnesota adults have a permit to carry, according to GOCRA.
In neighboring Iowa, fellow Hawkeye residents are also applying for permits and buying firearms. For some dealers, it’s at a rate where they cannot keep up with demand.