On Tuesday, Walmart announced that after its current inventory is depleted, it will cave to the demands of far-left activists and stop selling handgun ammunition and ammunition commonly used in other popular semi-automatic firearms. Walmart also stated it was requesting that customers eschew carrying guns openly in their roughly 4,700 stores as well as its Sam’s Club stores in states that permit open carry, as CNN reports.
Walmart CEO Doug McMillon issued a memo to employees on Tuesday in which he started by citing the mass shooting in El Paso in Dayton in August as well as further shootings in Midland and Odessa, Texas. He continued, “We’ve also been listening to a lot of people inside and outside our company as we think about the role we can play in helping to make the country safer. It’s clear to us that the status quo is unacceptable.”
McMillon noted that Walmart had already ceased selling AR-15s, raised the age limit to purchase a firearm or ammunition to 21, required a “green light” on a background check for purchase instead of the absence of a “red light,” which is required by federal law, among other steps. Then he wrote, “Today, we’re sharing the decisions we’ve made that go further: After selling through our current inventory commitments, we will discontinue sales of short-barrel rifle ammunition such as the .223 caliber and 5.56 caliber that, while commonly used in some hunting rifles, can also be used in large capacity clips on military-style weapons; We will sell through and discontinue handgun ammunition; and We will discontinue handgun sales in Alaska, marking our complete exit from handguns.”
McMillion acknowledged that the stores would still offer long barrel deer rifles and shotguns, and cited incidents where individuals have entered Walmart stores “attempting to make a statement and test our response” before continuing, “… we are respectfully requesting that customers no longer openly carry firearms into our stores or Sam’s Clubs in states where ‘open carry’ is permitted – unless they are authorized law enforcement officers.”
McMillon stated that he was sending letters to the White House and the Congressional leadership encouraging them to implement stronger background checks and the removal of weapons from those “who have been determined to pose an imminent danger.” He concluded, “The status quo is unacceptable.”
Dan Bartlett, Walmart executive vice president of corporate affairs, told reporters, “We feel like we are striking a responsible balance between the interests of law-abiding citizens who are exercising their legal rights and the safety concerns of our associates and customers.”
After the shootings in El Paso and Dayton, numerous Democratic Party presidential candidates called on Walmart to stop selling guns. As ABC News reported, “Four candidates — Senators Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, Bernie Sanders of Vermont, Cory Booker of New Jersey, as well as Julian Castro, the former mayor of San Antonio — took to Twitter to call on the retailer to change its policy …”
Sen. Kamala Harris, asked if she thought Walmart should stop selling guns, replied, “Yeah, I do … it’s not that everyone needs to stop selling guns, but there need to be checks and balances.” Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand of New York echoed, “Yes.” Congressman Tim Ryan of Ohio added, “I think if you keep it to hunting rifles and those kind of things. I think that’s appropriate.”