The 2012 campaign season and a year of high-profile shootings have resulted in big profits for one of America's top firearms companies.
Smith & Wesson Holding Corporation announced on Thursday that sales had spiked 48 percent in its second fiscal quarter of 2013, setting a record of $136 million.
"The increase was led by continued strong sales across all of the company's firearm product lines, including M&P™ branded products, such as pistols, modern sporting rifles, and the recently launched Shield™ pistol designed for concealed carry and personal protection," the company said in a statement.
Smith & Wesson also predicted year-over-year growth of 30 percent for the remainder of the 2013 fiscal year.
Stop Handgun Violence founder John Rosenthal told Current TV's Elliot Spitzer on Wednesday that gun companies were making record profits because lobbying groups like the National Rifle Association had been successful at making sure that the industry was largely unregulated.
"The dirty little secret is that the NRA loves high-profile mass shootings," Rosenthal explained. "The more gun violence, the better. The more fear, it causes people to buy guns, more profits for the gun industry. And then they funnel it into intimidating Democrats into submission. And then they fund the Republicans and the Republicans just roll over."
In 2012 alone, there have been mass shootings at a spa in Georgia, Oikos University in California, a cafe in Seattle, a theater in Colorado, a Sikh temple in Wisconsin and a sign factory in Minnesota. Most recently, NFL football player Jovan Belcher shot his girlfriend, Kasandra Perkins, and then killed himself in Kansas City.
Texas gun store owner Jerry McCall told WOAI last month that firearm sales were a “madhouse” on Black Friday because President Barack Obama was re-elected and people were stocking up to prepare for the Mayan-predicted “doomsday.”
Watch this video from Current TV's Viewpoint, broadcast Dec. 5, 2012.