Walmart announced on Tuesday that it will cease all sales of handgun and certain short-barrel rifle ammunition. The company is also asking customers not to openly carry guns in their stores.
The announcement comes after the mass shootings at an El Paso Walmart and in Odessa from a crazed gunman shooting from his car.
The NRA was quick to condemn the move.
“It is shameful to see Walmart succumb to the pressure of the anti-gun elites,” the gun group said in statement. “Lines at Walmart will soon be replaced by lines at other retailers who are more supportive of America’s fundamental freedoms.”
The NRA is facing high-profile scandal around its employees and financial management. Board members have resigned en masse and internal documents leaked reveal six-figure spending for CEO Wayne LaPierre. This summer, Dallas-based NRATV was shut down. Allen West, an NRA board member who is running for chairman of the Republican Party of Texas, has said “it is imperative that the NRA cleans its own house.”
Among the short-barrel rifle ammunition that Walmart has stopped selling are the .223 caliber and 5.56 mm bullets used by the AR-15.
2020 presidential candidates welcomed the news.
“This is a step in the right direction—and I’m grateful Walmart has taken action—but we can’t rely on corporations to stop gun violence,” Beto O’Rourke wrote on Twitter. “We need universal background checks, we need red flag laws, and we need to buy back every single assault weapon.”
“We must keep up the pressure, defeat the corporate gun lobby and enact common sense gun safety legislation,” Julian Castro tweeted. “Thank you @AMarch4OurLives, @MomsDemand, and @GiffordsCourage for making this progress possible.”
Walmart’s announcement comes shortly after it was confirmed that the Odessa shooter previously failed a background check. Reports say the gunman obtained the firearm through a private sale, where federal background checks are not required.
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