Congress is now looking more closely at the weapons manufacturer Smith & Wesson.
Washington, D.C. After its CEO declined to show up for a hearing on the weapons regularly used in mass shootings, a House oversight subcommittee on Tuesday issued a subpoena to gunmaker Smith & Wesson for records about the production and marketing of semi-automatic rifles in the AR-15 design.
The House investigation discovered that five major gun manufacturers made a combined $1 billion from the weapons over the previous ten years. They were occasionally marketed as a way for young men to demonstrate their masculinity even though they eventually became the “weapon of choice” for mass shooters.
Smith & Wesson’s M&P 15 semi-automatic weapon was used in a mass shooting that left seven people dead and 30 more hurt during a July 4 parade in the Chicago neighborhood of Highland Park.
CEO Mark P. Smith initially planned to speak alongside the leaders of two other companies last week before the Committee on Oversight and Reform, but withdrew five days beforehand, Democratic Chair Carolyn Maloney of New York said in a statement. Additionally, according to her, the business hasn’t given all the information and papers requested in its inquiry into gun makers, including information regarding the sales of its AR-15-style firearms. The Massachusetts company’s internal discussions regarding mass shootings are also requested under the subpoena.
An email asking for comment was not immediately answered by the business.
The House voted legislation to reinstate a ban on certain semi-automatic rifles, including the AR-15, in the first vote of its sort in years shortly after the session with gun executives. But because Republicans are firmly opposed, it is anticipated that the proposal will stall in the Senate.
Mass shootings, which are on the rise but still uncommon overall, according to gun manufacturers, are not the fault of the guns themselves. Supporters of gun rights contend that while they are legal to acquire under the Second Amendment, weapons are also popular with many individuals who purchase them for self-defense.
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