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In gun buyback talk, how do you round up so many weapons?

National and World

The number of AR-15 and AK-47s in the U.S. is estimated at a staggering 16 million

FILE - In this Aug. 15, 2012 file photo, three variations of the AR-15 rifle are displayed at the California Department of Justice in Sacramento, Calif. On Sept. 19, 2019, Connecticut-based Colt Firearms said it was suspending production of its version of the AR-15 for the civilian market.

FILE – In this Aug. 15, 2012 file photo, three variations of the AR-15 rifle are displayed at the California Department of Justice in Sacramento, Calif. On Sept. 19, 2019, Connecticut-based Colt Firearms said it was suspending production of its version of the AR-15 for the civilian market. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, File)

(AP) – Democratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke’s recent vow to take away people’s AR-15 and AK-47 rifles raises significant questions. Among them is how it might be possible to round up the millions of such guns that exist in the United States.

The number of AR-15 and AK-47s in the U.S. is estimated at a staggering 16 million. That leads to logistical challenges. Many gun owners are also unwilling to turn over the weapons. And if the government offered to buy them all back at face value, the price tag could easily run into the billions.

The prospect also stokes fears among some gun owners that Democrats are less interested in finding a middle ground and just want to confiscate guns. Even some gun-control advocates aren’t sure that confiscating firearms will work.

(Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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