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Walmart Thinks Congress Should Debate Assault-Weapons Ban Despite Still Selling Guns

Walmart Getting Political Less than two weeks after the mass shooting at a Walmart in El Paso, Texas, that killed twenty-two people, Walmart issued a statement supporting the reinstatement...

(Photo Credit: Joe Burbank / Orlando Sentinel)

Walmart Getting Political

Less than two weeks after the mass shooting at a Walmart in El Paso, Texas, that killed twenty-two people, Walmart issued a statement supporting the reinstatement of the assault weapons ban. The ban went into place in 1994 and expired in 2004, at which point Congress declined to reauthorize it.

Walmart has been criticized for years for its decision to sell guns in its sporting goods department. Walmart has refused to back down from selling guns, but Walmart CEO Doug McMillon said Congress should “debate” reauthorizing the assault weapons ban.

“In the national conversation around gun safety, we’re encouraged that broad support is emerging to strengthen background checks and to remove weapons from those who have been determined to pose an imminent danger,” McMillon said. “We do not sell military-style rifles, and we believe the reauthorization of the Assault Weapons ban should be debated to determine its effectiveness in keeping weapons made for war out of the 3 hands of mass murderers. We must also do more to understand the root causes that lead to this type of violent behavior.”

McMillon said Walmart already employs several safety measures around gun sales. They videotape all sales, only allow certain associates to handle gun sales, and has a minimum age of 21 to purchase guns.

Walmart stopped selling handguns in the mid-90s and took AR-15 style rifles off the shelves in 2015. It still sells hunting rifles in the sporting goods section.

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