Barack Obama has been sarcastically credited as an unintentionally effective gun salesman, as firearms purchases have spiked in response to his anti-gun rhetoric. His consistent criticism of the National Rifle Association has also accompanied notable spikes in the organization’s membership numbers.
While pro-gun activists have given Obama some tongue-in-cheek gratitude for these increases, the NRA recently found something for which it feels the administration deserves legitimate credit. In a recent statement, the lobbying group thanked Obama for signing into law the National Defense Authorization Act, complete with “several NRA-backed provisions.”
Among them, the press release revealed, are “expanding gun rights on stateside military bases; prohibiting the Environmental Protection Agency … from banning traditional ammunition; and saving taxpayer dollars by allowing gun collectors to buy vintage military surplus pistols.”
NRA Institute for Legislative Action Executive Director Chris W. Cox expounded on one provision, made especially relevant after four Marines were killed in an attack on two military recruitment stations in Tennessee this past summer.
“The brave men and women in our Armed Forces should not be left defenseless against terrorists on American soil,” he said. “Local commanders now have the authority to allow service men and women to be armed while on base. Members of the military should have the same ability to defend themselves as every other law-abiding citizen.”
Cox went on to explain the relevance of the NDAA’s EPA restriction, noting that it “ensures that our military, hunters and sportsmen will have access to traditional ammunition at a reasonable cost.”
Without the provision, the NRA explained, “anti-hunting groups” pressuring the EPA to ban lead ammunition would likely pursue new avenues in achieving their goal.
As for opening up vintage military firearms for public sale, Cox celebrated the measure as a victory on two fronts.
“The NDAA puts an end to the wasteful government practice of warehousing firearms,” he said. “It’s a common sense measure that saves taxpayers money and allows gun collectors to add a sought after [sic] vintage sidearm to their collection.”