Following mass shootings in Uvalde, Texas, and Buffalo, New York, the U.S. Military is expected to halt the sale of surplus 5.56 to the public.
Larry Keane, National Shooting Sports Foundation General Counsel, recently Tweeted about a rumor that the U.S. Military was considering shutting down the sale of surplus M855/SS109 to the commercial market.
— Larry Keane (@lkeane) June 15, 2022
The National Shooting Sports Foundation(NSSF) is the leading lobbying group for the firearms industry.
These sales from the U.S. military to the commercial market account for 30% of the supply of 5.56 on the market. If the Biden administration cut this supply, it is estimated that the firearm industry would lose anywhere from 400 to 500 jobs.
Officials from Winchester are currently in talks with government leaders in D.C. to “ensure their full understanding of the negative implications related to this type of sudden and reactive action.“
Washington has moved on several pieces of gun control legislation in the aftermath of two mass shootings.
Last week, Republicans and Democrats came together for a bipartisan deal on gun control. Senate Minority leader Mitch McConnell has come out to support this legislation.
“I’m comfortable with the framework and if the legislation ends up reflecting what the framework indicates, I’ll be supporting,” McConnell told reporters on Tuesday.
The bipartisan deal on gun control includes several measures, including; federal funding for Red Flag Laws, enhanced background checks, mental health funding, school safety funding, and closure of the “boyfriend loophole.”
The supply of 5.56 was expected to grow this year as the U.S. Army has adopted a new rifle in a new caliber. The U.S. Army officially selected Sig Sauer as the winner of its Next Generation Squad Weapons Program, their submission of the NGSW-R and NGSW-AR will be designated as the XM5 Rifle and XM250 Light Machine Gun.
Both of these firearms are chambered in the new 6.8×51 cartridge. This change in caliber had created an opening for more 5.56 to be released into the commercial market, as the U.S. Army would no longer use this cartridge. Still, if these rumors are true, then this opening will disappear.