- Members of Congress come from all walks of life, but only one member currently owns a gun store.
- Representative Andrew Clyde of Georgia’s 9th congressional district is the owner of the Clyde Armory in Athens.
- According to Clyde’s financial disclosure, the store is worth up to $25 million.
Support for Second Amendment rights and gun ownership are conservative staples in Congress.
But as lawmakers debate gun restrictions again in the wake of an elementary school massacre in Uvalde, Texas, only one congressman actually owns a gun store: Republican Rep. Andrew Clyde from Georgia’s 9th congressional district.
When not working in Washington, DC, Clyde runs the #4 rated gun store in Athens, Georgia, according to Yelp: Clyde Armory.
According to Clyde’s 2021 federal financial disclosure, the congressman’s stake in the store is worth between $5 million and $25 million, and it earned him between $1 million and $5 million in revenue in 2020 alone.
In addition to being a retail gun store, the armory also acts as a “law enforcement supply,” according to the disclosure.
The store’s website says it sells a slew of guns and accessories, including military-style semi-automatic rifles, gun silencers, and ballistic helmets.
Among the items for sale at Clyde Armory are a Colt-made AR-15 rifle for $1,349.95 and a .50 caliber semi-automatic rifle for $11,384.95.
Clyde is backed by the National Rifle Association — the organization’s political action committee donated $1,000 to Clyde’s campaign in 2020, according to nonpartisan research group OpenSecrets.
Representatives for Clyde’s office did not respond to Insider’s questions and request for comment.
But according to Clyde’s campaign website, he has big plans for gun rights in Congress. He wants:
- Repeal several taxes on firearms and ammunition
- Deregulation of gun silencers, short-barreled shotguns and short-barreled shotguns
- Eliminate the Brady background check system
In December 2020, Clyde told Fox News that the country’s current gun background check system is flawed and “puts the federal government between the Constitution and the individual in a way that robs the person of their individual constitutional right. It is not fair”.
The congressman also spoke out in March against gun registries maintained by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
“As a staunch supporter of the Second Amendment and a holder of a federal firearms license by trade, I find the ATF’s egregious abuse of power deeply troubling and requiring prompt action by Congress to protect lives. privacy of law-abiding gun owners and Second Amendment rights,” Clyde said alongside members of the House Second Amendment caucus.
Clyde, a freshman representative, is perhaps best known for equating the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol with “a normal tourist visit.”
He sits on the House Committee on Oversight and Reform and the Homeland Security Committee. He is also a member of the House Freedom Caucus.
Clyde claimed victory in his Republican primary on Tuesday night, easily beating his GOP opponents.
Being in a “Safe R” district, he is likely to be re-elected in November, according to Sabato’s Crystal Ball at the University of Virginia Center for Politics.