A new report shows that concealed carry permits rose by 2.3% in 2022, despite almost half of the states in the United States enacting what are known as constitutional carrying laws, which don’t require Americans obtain a permit from the government to legally carry firearms.
The number of concealed handgun permits continues to rise as the United States moves into a post-pandemic era. According to the Crime Prevention Research Center (CPRC), this figure is now at 22.01million, which is a 2.3% increase from last year.” Fox News Digital received the report by this week’s Fox News Digital.
The data was compiled by CPRC using information from concealed carry permits that were issued across the country in this year. The report doesn’t rely on polls or surveys about gun ownership, which CPRC argued could lead to people not answering truthfully. Concealed carry weapon (CCW), is when Americans conceal their firearms in public spaces, but not in plain view to others.
“Last year, permit holders increased by approximately 488,000. This is the slowest percentage and absolute growth since 2011, when we began collecting data. It represents 2.3% growth over 2021. The report says that part of this is due to the decline in permits in Constitutional Carry states, even though there is more legal carrying,” it states.
Georgia was the 25th state to adopt a Constitutional Carry Law in 2015. Alabama did the same, but it is not effective until January. These laws remove the requirement for residents of a state to carry a firearm publically. State leaders often refer to them as legislation that further protects citizens’ rights to self-defense in public.
The nationwide increase in concealed carry permits is not due to these Constitutional Carry States. The study shows that many residents still want permits to carry in states with reciprocity agreements. However, permits are rising in non-Constitutional Carry States, while they are decreasing in Constitutional Carry states. This is despite the fact that more people are carrying in those states.
In June, the Supreme Court issued landmark gun rulings. It struck down New York’s gun licensing laws which required residents to prove proper cause to obtain concealed carry permits. California and Massachusetts had similar concealed carry laws. However, after the Supreme Court ruling states were required to allow concealed carry licenses to be issued without citizens needing to justify why they are applying.
The study evaluated the states based on the percentage of adults with concealed carry permits. Alabama came in at the top, at 32.49%.
Alabama was followed by Indiana at 23.40% and Georgia at 15.53%. Iowa at fourth, 15.46%, and Colorado at fifth at 15.41% were the next three spots.
According to the study, Indiana, Iowa, and Georgia are constitutionally authorized carry states. Permits can only be obtained for carry outside of their state. These numbers “will dramatically underestimate the actual rate at which guns are legaly concealed carried.”
The study also notes that the estimates for Georgia and Alabama were based on background checks by NICS for concealed handgun permits.
The opposite end of the spectrum was Hawaii at 0% or 0.02% if you include permits for private security; New Jersey, Rhode Island, 0.02%; California at 0.4%; Maryland at 0.99%; and California at 0.18%.
The study found that 8.5% of adults have concealed carry permits. This number rises to 11% when you remove restrictive jurisdictions like California, Connecticut, Delaware and the District of Columbia from the data.
Six states have more concealed carry permit holders than one million – Alabama (Florida), Georgia, Indiana and Pennsylvania, as well as Texas (with Florida at the top, with 2.57 million).
This study is coming after gun sales had a record year in 2020. There were 23 million guns sold and 21 million background checks performed. These numbers broke records and spiked in March with the outbreak of the pandemic, before rising again in June as protests and riots spread throughout the country in response to George Floyd’s death.
Although gun sales have been declining in the second half of 2019, they have increased since 2020. The latest figures are a decrease in gun sales compared to 2021’s same period, but this year is still on pace for the third highest gun sales ever recorded,” the study concluded.