CNN is reporting that 2016 could set the record for most gun background checks in a year.
The FBI conducts a check for every gun purchase made through a federally licensed dealer, so background checks are considered a close proxy for gun sales. Not all guns are sold by federally licensed dealers, and a single background check can represent the purchase of multiple guns.
About 23.1 million checks were conducted in 2015 — the highest ever recorded since the current system for background checks was started in 1998. This year, 11.7 million checks have been conducted through May 31, compared to 8.9 million over the same period last year.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation reported on Wednesday that there were 2,145,865 background checks in April. That’s the slowest month so far this year, but it’s a 25% increase from April 2015.Background checks in every month this year have made double digit gains over 2015, which had a record number of requests for background checks. If the current pace keeps up, 2016 will beat last year’s record.