U.S.

Fox News Host Urges Viewers to Stock up on AR-15s After Beto O'Rourke Suggested a Ban on Further Sale of the Rifle

Fox News host Pete Hegseth urged Americans to go out and purchase more AR-15 rifles on Sunday after newly-minted 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke suggested banning continued sale of the weapon in the U.S.

O’Rourke, who formally announced his bid for the presidency last week, on Friday said that he doesn’t believe America should “sell any more weapons of war,” including the lightweight semi-automatic rifle.

"If you own an AR-15, keep it. Continue to use it responsibly and safely," he added. "I just don't think that we need to sell anymore weapons of war into this public."

During a segment on Fox & Friends Weekend, co-host Hegseth told viewers to stock up on the weapon. "If I own an AR-15, stocks of gun companies probably will go up after things like this,” he said. “Responsible gun owners recognize their right to own rifles like that. You can use "weapons of war" or 'assault ban' all you want."

Hegseth added: "This will appeal to his base, young people who are uninformed about the difference between an automatic and semi-automatic rifle. But, go out and get your second AR-15 today. Maybe it's a good reason to do so."

While answering a question on gun control during a podcast appearance on Friday, O’Rourke claimed that the AR-15 was “designed, engineered and sold to the United States military for the express purpose of killing people as effectively as possible, in as greater number as possible.”

The Democrat argued that the rifle, with its “high-impact” and “high-velocity rounds,” would “blow a hole in your back the size of an orange,” leaving the wounded in a position where they will “bleed to death” before anyone can get to them “because that is exactly what it was designed to do.”

O’Rourke then suggested he opposed the continued sale of the weapon. “I just don’t think that we need to sell anymore weapons of war into this public.” he said.

Last September, researchers at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) found that “active shooters” using semi-automatic rifles will double their chances of wounding and killing victims, in comparison to another type of gun. The study analyzed around 200 active shooting incidents in America in determining their conclusion.

Screen Shot 2019-03-18 at 9 "Fox & Friends Weekend" co-host Pete Hegseth urged viewers on Sunday to go out and buy AR-15s after presidential candidate Beto O-Rourke suggested a ban on weapons earlier in the weekend. Fox News/Screenshot

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