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Americans Doubt Reliability of 'Smart Guns'; Won’t Buy Them and Oppose Their Mandate, NSSF Poll Finds

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A poll conducted for the National Shooting Sports Foundation has found Americans are highly skeptical of the reliability of user authorized technology for firearms. They also say overwhelmingly that they would not be likely to buy a so-called “smart gun” and overwhelmingly oppose any government mandate requiring the use of this technology should it become available.
Asked "How familiar are you with efforts to develop a firearm that will only fire for a specific authorized person(s)?", only 20 percent of respondents said they were very or somewhat familiar with the concept of "smart gun" technology. When told that such firearms would incorporate biometric or radio frequency identification (RFID) with an activation system that would rely on battery power, 74 percent of respondents said that these firearms would not be reliable at all or very reliable. Gun owners overwhelmingly (84%) believed a smart gun would not be reliable, while a clear majority (60%) of non-gun owners also believed they would not be reliable.
These findings were among the results of a national scientific poll of more than 1,200 Americans conducted in October by McKeon & Associates and released today by the NSSF. Although attempts to develop and market firearms equipped with authorized user recognition technology have been discussed for many years, the topic has been revived in recent months by some gun control advocates, remarks by President Obama and by the depiction of a smart gun in the latest James Bond movie.
overwhelming 74 percent of respondents overall said that they would not buy or would not very likely buy such a smart gun. Some 70 percent of the survey sample said that they did not believe that government should mandate that all firearms produced incorporate smart gun technology should it become commercially available. Read the NSSF press release for more details.

    Consultants formerly employed by ATF will be available to premium members for consultation. Private talks can be scheduled in the meeting room at the NSSF membership booth (L221). Meetings will be scheduled in half-hour increments on Tuesday, Jan. 14, Wednesday, Jan. 15 and Thursday, Jan. 16th, between 1 and 3 p.m. To learn more about the premium membership packet, please contact Samantha Hughes at 203-426-1320 ext. 262 or shughes@nssf.org.

  • SHOT SHOW EXHIBITOR DEADLINE TOMORROW . . . Every exhibiting company is entitled to a free listing in the official printed Show Directory and online exhibitor directory and tomorrow is the deadline for editing and approving listing information and for purchasing an additional listing.
    Exhibitors must log in no later than tomorrow, Nov. 13, to confirm their information. If you do not have your Exhibitor ID and Password, please contact customer service at 855-355-7468, and dial 1 for exhibitor services. A list of important deadlines can be found in the Deadline Checklist located on the Exhibitor Resource Center.
  • OFFICIAL 2014 SHOT SHOW PARTNERS . . . Many SHOT Show attendees are receiving unsolicited emails and phone calls from numerous trade show exhibit houses, travel agencies, and marketing firms trying to sell their services relating to the 2014 SHOT Show. We
    strictly enforce and restrict any and all communications from our official partners, and you can feel confident knowing that we have approved each partner service provider. The Exhibitor Resource Center contains a complete list of these companies, and many of their order forms and services can be obtained in the last section under Contractor Services. Please consider the official show partners first when it comes to delivering you quality services at the upcoming SHOT Show.
    Seating gets more limited by the day for the State of the Industry Dinner, sponsored by Outdoor Channel. Fewer than 400 of the 2,100 seats remain so lock in your seat now for the Tuesday, Jan. 14, event visiting the SHOT Show registration page and purchasing your ticket. Join us as we recap the past year and get treated to an unforgettable live performance by Penn & Teller.
    Make sure to tune in to the first SHOT webinar of the year on Nov. 20. This webinar will provide insight by SHOT’s own Show Management on the best practices of planning your show experience. Helpful tools including creating a game plan, establishing your budget, and understanding the tools at your disposal to plan for the upcoming show. More details to follow.
Government Relations
  • FIREARMS RETAILERS PART OF THE SOLUTION, NOT THE PROBLEM . . . Most guns used in crime are stolen, and despite the clear suggestion by the director of an anti-gun group in a newspaper op-ed, straw purchasing of firearms for prohibited persons is rare in Connecticut, the NSSF’s Larry Keane wrote in a letter to the editor of the Hartford Courant. Keane describes the industry's "Don’t Lie for the Other Guy" program and points out that to stop the criminal misuse of firearms the only truly effective tactic is to focus on the criminals, Keane explains in a blog posting.
  • SUNNYVALE, CALIF. BALLOT MEASURE VIOLATES PREEMPTION LAW . . . The NSSF will go to court in California to challenge provisions of a ballot measure passed by voters last week in the City of Sunnyvale. New regulations will require gun owners in the city to report loss or theft of a firearm within 48 hours of when they should "reasonably have known" it was missing; mandate firearms to be locked when not in use; limit magazine capacity; and require licensed retailers to maintain sales logs. Implementation of these measures would violate state preemption
    laws in NSSF’s view. We will keep you posted as we move forward with this challenge. The Washington Post suggests the Sunnyvale regulations could become the new focus of the national gun control debate.
    The Pleasant Hill City Council decision to approve an ordinance governing federally licensed firearms retailers is an example of ". . .overregulation that will do nothing to improve public safety," NSSF's Larry Keane told the Contra Costa Times last week. Passage of this measure came despite the city's police chief's statement that his department has never had a problem with any retailer in Pleasant Hill. NSSF will now pursue appropriate legal remedies in court and will keep you up to date on developments.
  • CALIF. COURT BARS ENFORCEMENT OF VAGUE AMMO PURCHASE LAW . . . A California appeals court has barred enforcement of a vaguely written state law that would require all purchases of ammunition "principally for use" in handguns to be made in person rather than by mail order or on the Internet. The law, blocked by the courts since 2011, calls for ammunition purchasers to be thumb printed and sellers to keep transaction records.
  • BLOOMBERG CLAIMS ROLE IN MCAULIFFE WIN, BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE . . . New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg lost no time in claiming a role for himself and his money in the narrow victory of Democrat Terry McAuliffe in Virginia's gubernatorial race. But, wait. In the two weeks after Bloomberg began airing highly misleading TV ads in that race, Republican candidate Ken Cuccinelli actually gained in the polls. By the time the final votes were counted, McAuliffe ended up winning by less than 3 percent. Read the NSSF’s Larry Keane's take on this closely-watched governor's race..
  • HARRY REID'S NOT WILD ABOUT TRYING ANOTHER GUN BILL VOTE . . . U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) has said again that he does not have the votes to bring a gun control bill to the floor. "I would love to bring it back up, but I can't do it until I have the votes, and at this stage I don't have the votes," Reid told reporters last week. His remarks came on the heels of the shooting death of a TSA agent at Los Angeles International Airport and the incident at the Paramus Mall in New Jersey where a man committed suicide, but no one else was harmed.
  • N.Y. COUNTY SHERIFF SAYS SAFE ACT POSITION AIDED RE-ELECTION . . . Timothy B. Howard won a third term as Erie County sheriff in upstate New York. Howard said last week that his public assurance that he would not have his deputies enforce the
    highly restrictive provisions of the SAFE Act, the controversial new state firearms law passed in haste by the State Legislature early this year, helped propel him to a decisive victory.
    Gaining funding for new ventures from banks and traditional investors can be difficult and expensive, if not impossible, but an article posted at the Range Report website tells about how at least one range found capital by going public, that is, by exploring the crowdfunding option. It could be the means other
    would-be range developers gain needed backing.
  • GRAND VIEW MEDIA ACQUIRES SHOOTING SPORTS RETAILER . . . After nearly two years of managing the publishing operations of Shooting Sports Retailer, Grand View Media Group recently acquired the title. The content of this publication for retailers in the shooting sports industry is available in a bimonthly print edition, a digital magazine edition and Hot Gear E-blast and a bimonthly SSR Insider e-newsletter. Read the press release announcing the acquisition.
  • 55 YEARS OF USFW HUNTING DATA IN ONE NSSF REPORT . . . NSSF’s new report, Trends in Hunter Recreation and Spending condenses 55 years worth of USFW National Survey data on hunting down to a brief 40 page report. The report charts 1955 – 2011 data on a variety of hunting related topics such as: hunters and days hunted by type of hunting, demographics of hunters, expenditures and more. This report is free to NSSF members as a benefit of membership. Not a member but want to be? Contact NSSF Member Services Coordinator, Samantha Hughes at 203-426-1320 x262 or shughes@nssf.org. This report is free to NSSF members.
  • OCTOBER NSSF-ADJUSTED NICS BACKGROUND CHECKS DOWN 0.5 % . . . The October 2013 NSSF-adjusted National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) figure of 1,113,818 is a decrease of 0.5 percent compared to the NSSF-adjusted NICS figure of 1,118,994 in October 2012. For comparison, the unadjusted October 2013 NICS figure of 1,679,099 reflects a 4.6 percent increase from the unadjusted NICS figure of
    1,604,743 in October 2012. Read more.
  • RUGER SALES UP 45% IN THIRD QUARTER, PROFIT JUMPS 64% . . . Sturm, Ruger & Co. (NYSE:RGR) reported that second-quarter sales were up 45 percent and earnings increased 64 percent compared to the same period a year ago. Said CEO Michael Fifer, "New product introductions were a significant component of our sales growth as new product sales represented $146.6 million, or 32 percent, of firearm sales in the first nine months of 2013. New product introductions in 2013 included the LC380 pistol, the SR45 pistol and the Ruger American Rimfire rifle."
  • ATK RECEIVES ARMY AMMUNITION ORDERS . . . ATK has announced it has received orders for approximately $387 million for ammunition to be produced at its Lake City Army Ammunition Plant. The orders fall under the plant's new production contract, which began Oct. 1, 2013, and include a mix of 5.56mm, 7.62mm and .50-caliber high-quality military ammunition.
  • ATK SALES UP 48% IN SPORTING GROUP . . . ATK (NYSE:ATK) reported that second-quarter sales in its Sporting Group -- which includes ammunition for law enforcement, military and sporting applications as well as optics, reloading gear and sport-shooting and tactical accessories -- were up 48 percent to $421 million compared to $284 million in the same period last year. The company said the increase in sales was driven by higher volume in ammunition, sales from Savage of $57 million and a previously announced ammunition price increase, partially offset by a decline in sales in tactical military accessories. ATK reported that its overall net income for the quarter was up 42 percent.
News of Note
  • CABELA’S ANNOUNCES SUPPORT FOR NSSF’S PROJECT CHILDSAFE . . . Cabela’s, "the World’s Foremost Outfitter of hunting, fishing and outdoor gear," and NSSF have announced a new partnership to promote firearm safety through NSSF's Project ChildSafe program. With the announcement, Cabela's joins a growing list of leaders in the hunting and target-shooting world—including USA Shooting, the Outdoor Channel and many hunting, shooting and outdoor publishers—that have endorsed and supported Project ChildSafe’s mission this year. "Both Cabela's and the National Shooting Sports Foundation place a premium on firearm safety and responsibility," said Scott Williams, Cabela's Chief Marketing Officer. "Cabela's is proud to support Project ChildSafe and help educate firearm owners on the importance of safe and proper firearm storage." See who in industry is supporting Project ChildSafe and learn how to become a supporter.
    Hunting drives local economies across the country, and CBS Minnesota profiled one business that is dependent on hunters and the game they supply. Get a look at a meat-packer/retailer that makes 5,000 pounds of venison sausage in one month during the hunting season.
    America’s national wildlife refuges continue to be strong economic engines for local communities, pumping $2.4 billion into the economy and supporting more than 35,000 jobs, according to a new national report released by the U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewel. Read both the press release on this topic and the actual Banking on Nature report.
    The increase in the number of women hunters probably comes as no surprise to industry members, but word is going out to the mainstream as well, as evidenced by the article, "More Women Give Hunting a Shot," by Kristen A. Schmitt, which was published Nov. 3 for National Geographic Daily News. It begins, "In recent years, American women are spending more time in tree stands and deer blinds—and putting fresh meat on the table." Read the entire article.
  • FIREARMS INDUSTRY JOBS . . . Visit www.nssf.org/jobs for current employment opportunities in the shooting, hunting and outdoor industry. Employers: Log in to post a job opening.

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