Election Day voters talk crime, first-time gun buyer surge

Voter panel on ‘Varney & Co.’ says they’re headed to the polls over rising crime concerns

Americans are starting to take personal safety into their own hands and bringing their concerns over a nationwide crime surge to the polls on Election Day.

"There's a lot of first-time gun buyers constantly," FSS Armory owner Ross Osias told FOX Business’ Stuart Varney in a voter panel Tuesday. "They're all expressing some fear and this new wave of, ‘I need to protect myself.’"

In a town hall-style event on "Varney & Co.," voters from New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania explained how their experiences with crime are impacting their decision in the 2022 midterms.

"The progressive[s] have unleashed chaos upon all of us," Glenn Vile, brother-in-law of a murdered Goldman Sachs employee, said. "It used to be fine when crime was bad in the 90s... after 8 o'clock, somebody got mugged. Now it's some lady jogging at 11 in the morning, has neck bones broken, then it's despicable."


"If you want more of something, you tolerate it," Vile continued. "And our administration, the mayor, the governor, [New York State Assembly Speaker] Carl Heastie, they're all tolerating crime, and it's chaos. It's not fair."

American flag displayed at gun store

FSS Armory owner and New Jersey voter Ross Osias discusses a "new wave" of Americans taking personal safety into their own hands on "Varney & Co." Tuesday, November 8, 2022. (Getty Images)

U.S. total firearm checks peaked in 2020 and have remained high since then, with 38 million new sales or transfers in the 2021 calendar year, according to the FBI’s NICS database.

Osias, who operates his firearms store in New Jersey, claimed he gets anywhere from 3 to 5 first-time gun owners per day, and an equal number of men and women are purchasing products.

"We call it the trifecta. They'll buy a pistol, a shotgun and a rifle all at the same time," Osias explained.

Also during the panel, the president of the largest coalition of small businesses in West Philadelphia claimed a recent survey showed that most establishments are closing their doors early every night.

"Ninety-two percent of our businesses were closing every day before nightfall because they had significant security concerns," West Philadelphia Corridor Collaborative President Jabari Jones said.

The small business advocate described his community’s commercial corridors and main streets as "ghost towns" the moment the sun goes down.

"When you have crime concerns, those businesses can't even find workers that are willing to work later hours because they're afraid of being potentially victimized on a job," Jabari said.

For those that have personal experiences with crime, like New York City resident and registered Democrat Madeline Brame, the concerns are pressing enough to switch their votes to red.

Brame’s son, an Army veteran, was murdered in a knife attack in the city in 2018. While she said police caught the four suspected perpetrators, District Attorney Alvin Bragg dropped charges on two of them. In July, Brame fell victim herself to a subway trampling, sustaining injuries and being rushed to an emergency room after passengers reportedly ran from someone with a gun.

"Numb. I feel numb," Brame said of walking around New York City.


Earlier Tuesday on "Mornings with Maria," Fox News contributor Joe Concha said the midterm elections are about five key issues, with crime being one of them.

"This election is about inflation, taxes, crime, the border and education," Concha noted. "And it ain’t about what they talk about on the other networks so much, which is January 6 and Donald Trump."