Walmart to Stop Selling Handgun Ammo, Asks Customers to No Longer Carry Rifles Into Its Stores

Walmart to Stop Selling Handgun Ammo, Asks Customers to No Longer Carry Rifles Into Its Stores

In a move sure to infuriate the gun lobby, Walmart on Tuesday announced it will no longer sell handgun ammunition. Additionally, the company will ask customers to not open-carry guns in its stores.

The company will also stop selling handguns in Alaska, the only state where it does so.

Walmart CEO Doug McMillon made the announcement in a memo to employees. He cited the recent mass shooting at a Walmart store in El Paso, along with other shootings in Dayton, Ohio and Odessa, Texas, as driving the change. According to CNN, he wrote that

In a complex situation lacking a simple solution, we are trying to take constructive steps to reduce the risk that events like these will happen again. The status quo is unacceptable.

McMillon also said he is writing to the White House and congressional leaders to urge them to find “common sense” gun control measures, including possibly reinstating the assault weapons ban, which was passed under President Clinton in 1994 and allowed to expire under the George W. Bush administration ten years later.

Walmart has slowly decreased its gun sales over the years but still accounts for around 20 percent of sales in the ammunition market. The company estimates this latest move will drop it to somewhere around six to nine percent.

The company will still carry hunting rifles and shotguns, as well as ammunition for both. In his memo, McMillon said doing so means Walmart “will be even more focused on the needs of hunting and sport shooting enthusiasts.”

Additionally, customers with concealed-carry permits will still be allowed to carry guns in their stores.

The open carrying of guns in stores appears to be a request of customers to not do so, not a ban on the practice. But it is still sure to anger open-carry advocates.

Read CNN’s story here.

Gary Legum

Gary Legum

Gary Legum has written about politics and culture for Independent Journal Review, Salon, The Daily Beast, Wonkette, AlterNet and McSweeney's, among others. He currently lives in his native state of Virginia.