Oregon gun rights advocates fear ‘end of firearm sales’ until state creates permit system, sales skyrocket

Gun rights advocates and hunters in the state of Oregon fear that all firearm sales will end in three weeks until a permit system is implemented as one of the country’s strictest gun control measures takes effect that many consider unconstitutional.

(Video Credit: Fox News)

Oregon voters passed Measure 114 by a 1.5 percent margin in Oregon. It bans ammunition magazines capable of holding more than 10 rounds and mandates the creation of a permit-to-purchase system that includes hands-on firearm training.

It’s a catch-22 as many new gun owners can’t get training until they own a gun, but they now can’t get a gun until they have training. The measure will also stop the purchase of guns out of state until the system is implemented.

“We’re looking at the end of firearm sales in Oregon until this system is put into place,” Amy Patrick, who is the policy director for the Oregon Hunters Association, told Fox News in an interview.

According to Oregon State Police, Measure 114 will go into effect on Dec. 8. When asked by Fox News if guns sales will be halted if the permit processing system is not in place when the measure takes effect, the Oregon State Police deflected, stating, “OSP is working diligently to ensure that the new Permit to Purchase program will be operational by December 8, 2022.”

(Video Credit: KGW News)

Only six out of Oregon’s 36 counties voted in favor of the gun control mandate. At least five sheriffs have declared that they will not enforce part or all of the law when it takes effect. Since the permit system is implemented at the state level, that may not matter at this point.

The measure was strongly opposed by a number of outdoor and sportsman groups, including the national Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and the National Shooting Sports Foundation.

“It’s a feel-good measure that only adds new unfunded burdens on local police, eliminates opportunities for recreational activities, and hurts conservation funding while not making any tangible impact on the real problem,” Keely Hopkins, who is the manager of Pacific states & firearm policy for Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation, said in a statement.

Patrick noted that gun stores are prepping for the worst-case scenario in an attempt to stay in business. They are telling their customers it’s possible they may have to stop selling firearms in December.

“That also means that Oregonians cannot go out of state to purchase firearms either,” she noted. “We’re basically being held hostage by 114 because firearms dealers have to respect the laws of a person’s home state.”

Gun sales have gone through the roof because of the measure passing. The Oregon State Police claim there has been an “extreme” increase in requests for background checks since before the midterm elections. The demand is greater than it was during the pandemic when Oregon saw record-breaking gun sales.

Gun control advocates think the measure will curb violent crime, suicides, and accidental shootings. Many strongly assert it won’t.

“The most charitable spin I can put on this is that they really thought they needed to do something to solve that,” Patrick said referring to skyrocketing shooting incidents in Portland where the measure passed overwhelmingly. “It’s a criminal, violent act that’s happening. Regulating legal firearm owners is not going to have the effect that they are desiring on that.”

The measure will impact hunters the most in the state.

Previously, Oregonians only had to pass a background check to purchase a gun. Now, they will have to complete an “in-person demonstration of the applicant’s ability to lock, load, unload, fire and store a firearm before an instructor certified by a law enforcement agency,” which is a much stricter process than what is currently required to obtain a concealed handgun license in the state.

The imprecise language of the magazine capacity limit in the measure could also impact bird hunters and skeet and trap shooters. The Oregon National Rifle Association, the Democratic Party of Oregon Gun Owners Caucus, and the Oregon Firearms Federation all oppose it and argue that several shotgun models are capable of holding more than 10 rounds.

“That’s going to make a big impact on our shotgunners and whether or not they can utilize the firearms that they have or potentially purchase a firearm that would be appropriate for bird hunting,” Patrick pointed out.

Numerous state and national groups are preparing to file litigation as the constitutionality of the measure will drag through the courts and could possibly head to the Supreme Court.

“We are hopeful that there will be an injunction put in place with some of these lawsuits,” she remarked. “That’s the best-case scenario right now.”

“At a time when violent crime is skyrocketing and police are not responding, this measure will have a devastating effect on our poorest communities and put those in high crime areas in even greater jeopardy,” the Oregon State Sheriffs’ Association said according to WPTV. “114 will make criminals out of law-abiding Oregonians for the simple possession of items they may have lawfully owned for decades while dangerous and violent criminals are released onto our streets.”

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