Report: Non-military federal agencies spend $1.48 billion on guns and ammo since 2006
There are now more non-military government employees who carry guns than there are U.S. Marines, according to a new report.
Open the Books, a taxpayer watchdog group run by Illinois-based Adam Andrzejewski, released a study Wednesday that finds domestic government agencies continue to grow their stockpiles of military-style weapons, as Democrats sat on the House floor calling for more restrictions on what guns American citizens can buy.
The “Militarization of America” report found civilian agencies spent $1.48 billion on guns, ammunition, and military-style equipment between 2006 and 2014.
“Regulatory enforcement within administrative agencies now carries the might of military-style equipment and weapons,” Open the Books said. “For example, the Food and Drug Administration includes 183 armed ‘special agents,’ a 50 percent increase over the ten years from 1998-2008. At Health and Human Services (HHS), ‘Special Office of Inspector General Agents’ are now trained with sophisticated weaponry by the same contractors who train our military special forces troops.”
Open the Books found there are now over 200,000 non-military federal officers with arrest and firearm authority, surpassing the 182,100 personnel who are actively serving in the U.S. Marines Corps.
The IRS spent nearly $11 million on guns, ammunition, and military-style equipment for its 2,316 special agents. The EPA spent $3.1 million on guns, ammo, and equipment, including drones, night vision, “camouflage and other deceptive equipment,” and body armor. Other administration agencies that have purchased guns and ammo include the Small Business Administration, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the Department of Education, and the National Institute of Standards and Technology. The report also highlighted that the Department of Health and Human Services has “special agents” with “sophisticated military-style weapons.”