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Seattle Gun Tax Backfire Reveals Limiting Firearms and Raising Taxes is a Bad Idea

Almost every political action has at least one unintended consequence.

Seattle is starting discover this firsthand after passing an ordinance that levies a tax on each firearm and every round of ammunition sold within the city.

Its proponents hailed the measure as a way to defray the costs of gun violence.

Instead gun sales have plummeted and dealers are laying off workers if not closing up shop entirely.

In addition to this, gun violence and its costs has skyrocketed.

Proponents of the measure say give it time – all the data isn’t there yet.

“How much data do you need?” asked Dave Workman, senior editor of TheGunMag.com and member of the Second Amendment Foundation, according to Fox News. “The data says the law has failed to prevent what they promised it would prevent.”

Seattle City Councilman Tim Burgess introduced the tax in 2015. It puts a $25 tax on every firearm sold in the city and up to 5 cents per round of ammunition. The measure easily passed and took effect January 1, 2016. Comparing the first five months of 2017 with the same period before the gun tax went into effect, reports of shots fired are up 13 percent, the number of people injured in shootings climbed 37 percent and gun deaths doubled, according to crime statistics from the Seattle Police Department.

Councilman Burgess never returned calls and emails for comment. Dana Robinson Slote, director of communication for Seattle City Council, said she was “politely declining your invitation for an interview.”

When Burgess was peddling the gun tax to his fellow council members, he claimed it would bring between $300,000 to $500,000 annually to the city coffers every year.

City officials refuse to say what the actual revenue is — only that it’s “under $200,000.”

Mike Coombs, owner of Outdoor Emporium, isn’t surprised by this. He believes that the actual figures are probably only slightly above $100,000 after witnessing a 60 percent decline in gun sales.

“I’ve had to lay off employees because of this,” Coombs said. “It’s hurting us, it’s hurting our employees.”

The results were also no surprise to Workman.

“All these gun control laws affect the wrong people,” Workman said. “The gang bangers don’t go in and buy ammunition at retail, at least not around here. It certainly hasn’t stopped them from getting their hands on firearms.”