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George Soros’ Gun Grab?


Q: Does George Soros own the company buying many firms that make guns and ammunition?
A: No. Contrary to a fanciful claim made in a viral email, the Freedom Group is not linked to the liberal billionaire. The National Rifle Association says the real owners are “strong supporters” of gun rights.

FULL QUESTION

Searched your archives and viral stories, couldn’t find. Is there any truth to this?

I googled “Cerberus capital management freedom group buying guns” and found many stories about this. Without lots of research, it looks like it is true!

For the last several years a company called  “The Freedom Group” has been buying up American gun and ammunition manufacturers.

Some of these companies are:

[EET ]

Bushmaster
Marlin
Remington
DPMS
Dakota Arms and
H&R
DPMS Panther Arms
NEF
Dakota Arms
LC Smith
Parker
AAC
Barnes Bullets
EOTAC
INTC

Some people worry that Freedom Group is going to control most of the firearms companies in the United States. Of course, if you control the manufacturers you can decide not to sell to civilians, or, you can raise the prices to ridiculous levels or you can make the supply of guns and ammo scarce – all sorts of logjams.

What a perfect way to control America’s guns!

If you do some digging you will see that The Freedom Group is owned by a Wall Street investment company called “Cerberus Capital Management”.

“Cerberus” in the epic book “The Inferno” by Dante Alighieri, is a three-headed demon hound (from Roman mythology) that guards the Gates of Hell to prevent those damned souls who have just crossed the river Styx, from escaping back to the world.

Investor GEORGE SOROS owns Cerberus!

Please pass this on to all your freedom loving friends. This needs to come out – and quickly!  Why have we not heard about this in the “mainstream” media? I would think this would be BIG news.

The absence of big media coverage on this important subject should be BIG news to you, too![/EET]

FULL ANSWER

The anonymous author of this chain letter asks why the media haven’t reported that George Soros is connected to a company that is buying a lot of other companies that make guns and ammunition. The answer to that question is simple: because it isn’t true.

Soros doesn’t own Cerberus Capital Management, a private equity firm founded in 1992 by Stephen Feinberg and William Richter. Both Feinberg and Richter currently serve as two of the firm’s senior managing directors. And Feinberg, also the firm’s chief executive officer, is an avid hunter.

Soros, a billionaire philanthropist and known supporter of Democratic causes, isn’t even one of the company’s 26 senior executives. But the firm’s senior executives do include former Republican Vice President Dan Quayle and former Republican Treasury Secretary John Snow.

It’s true, however, that Cerberus Capital Management owns Freedom Group, a leading company in the manufacturing and marketing of guns and ammunition. And it’s also true that in recent years Freedom Group has acquired many of the firearms and ammunition manufacturing companies mentioned in the email, including Bushmaster Firearms (in April 2006), Remington (in May 2007) and Marlin (in January 2008). But that’s about all the author of this latest viral message gets right.

It has even been taken apart online by none other than the National Rifle Association, the largest gun-rights lobbying organization in the United States. The NRA’s Institute for Legislative Action called the rumor “completely false and baseless.”

NRA-ILA, Oct. 14: Recently, an old rumor regarding Cerberus–the private equity firm that owns Freedom group, a holding company that in turn owns a number of firearms manufacturers, including Remington, Marlin, Bushmaster, and DPMS–was in some way tied to George Soros.

This rumor is completely false and baseless.

NRA has had contact with officials from Cerberus and Freedom Group for some time.  The owners and investors involved are strong supporters of the Second Amendment and are avid hunters and shooters.

In reality, at no time has George Soros ever been a part of the ownership group of Freedom Group or Cerberus, and as a privately traded corporation, there is no possibility that he will be in the future.

This unsubstantiated rumor has caused a great deal of unnecessary concern for gun owners. NRA-ILA urges our members to take great care before repeating baseless rumors found on the Internet.

So, there’s no need to pass this one on to “all your freedom loving friends” as the email asks.

— D’Angelo Gore

Sources

Freedom Group Inc. Annual Report for Fiscal Year 2010.

National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action. “Internet Rumors About Cerberus, Freedom Group Are Patently False.” 14 Oct 2011.

Petzal, David. “How Not To Write Rot and Evil.” Fieldandstream.com. 12 Oct 2011.

Sorkin, Andrew Ross. “A Recluse Lifts the Veil a Little.” New York Times. 15 Apr 2008.