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Tactical guns and ammo have been on short supply the last few years, but supplies are easing and the coming year may be a good time to buy.
The great AR panic and shortage of 2012-2013 now seems to be behind us. Until a few months ago it was almost impossible to find an AR-style rifle for sale in any gun store or gun show in America.
This was also true for other military-type semi-auto rifles and carbines. If you did occasionally find one, the price tag increased significantly, sometimes double the price or more.
Over the winter and spring ARs, AK’s, FAL’s, Mini-14’s and other rifles the media likes to refer to as “assault weapons” disappeared from the shelves at all levels of the firearms retail business, from local gun shops and sporting good stores, to the big outlets like Walmart, Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s.
Early Warning Signs
Why, and how, did this happen? It isn’t as if it hasn’t happened before. The push for tougher gun control laws has surfaced many times over the years, going back to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy just over 50 years ago.
Depending on which party controlled the White House or Congress, proposals for more restrictive controls on the design, ownership and sale of firearms has come and gone many times. In many cases shortages quickly occurred in the category or categories of the firearms being legislated against.
The Assault Weapons Ban of 1994, signed into law by President Bill Clinton, led to shortages of numerous semi-auto rifles and high-capacity handguns. When the legislation expired by way of its sunset provisions 10 years later during the Bush administration, the guns involved became available again.
Distrust of Government Motives
More recently, the long and contentious re-election campaign for President Barack Obama convinced many gun owners that a continuation of his administration was sure to bring new and more restrictive federal regulation of firearms.
Soon the “get’em while you can” slogan was being heard in gun stores and at gun shows. Long before the election, shortages began to develop in gun stores across the country, especially of AR-style semi-auto rifles.
After the re-election of President Obama, some concerned citizens opted to become gun owners and, believing AR-15s would soon be banned, decided that their first, and perhaps only gun, had to be an AR.