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10 states most dependent on the gun industry

As the debate over gun control rages on, analysts at WalletHub tabulated the economic impact of the gun industry on each of the states and Washington, D.C.

Jason Zielinski shows a customer an AR-15 style rifle at Freddie Bear Sports sporting goods store.
Getty Images
Jason Zielinski shows a customer an AR-15 style rifle at Freddie Bear Sports sporting goods store.

WalletHub focused on three key facets: presence of the firearm industry, gun prevalence in the state and gun politics.

While New Hampshire ranks highest for the number of firearms-industry jobs per capita — seven times more than the District of Columbia — it is Idaho that relies most heavily on the gun industry for jobs and political contributions, according to the report.

Firearms and ammunitions contributed an estimated $43 billion to the economy in 2014, according to the National Shooting Sports Foundation. That figure includes more than 263,000 gun industry jobs that paid more than $13.7 billion in total wages.

Here are the states most dependent on the gun industry:

  1. Idaho
  2. Alaska
  3. Montana
  4. South Dakota
  5. Arkansas
  6. Wyoming
  7. New Hampshire
  8. Minnesota
  9. Kentucky
  10. Alabama

The states with the highest gun ownership are Alaska, Arkansas and Idaho, while the states with the lowest gun ownership are Delaware, Rhode Island and New York.

"State and local laws can be and are effective, as for example in New York State, where 85-90 percent of guns recovered in crimes come from out of state, thanks to New York's tough gun laws," Robert Spitzer, the chair of the department of political science at State University of New York at Cortland, said in a statement.

"There is also a direct line correlation between the strictness of states' gun laws and overall gun deaths and gun violence, with states having the strictest laws having the lowest rates, and the reverse for states with lax laws."

Here are the states that are the least dependent on the gun industry:

  1. Delaware
  2. Rhode Island
  3. New Jersey
  4. New York
  5. Maryland
  6. California
  7. Michigan
  8. Maine
  9. Hawaii
  10. Washington