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Gun enthusiasts showed up in force at Virginia rally with firepower

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  • Thousands of heavily armed men and women braved the 30-degree temperatures in Richmond, Virginia, on Monday to proudly show off their firearms and its accompanying accessories.
  • Some enthusiasts near the Virginia capitol carried a .50 caliber rifle capable of firing armor-piercing rounds or an underbarrel grenade launcher. One controversial radio host even rode in an armored vehicle and warned through its PA system, “If they try to take our firearms, 1776 will commence again!”
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Thousands of heavily armed men and women braved the 30-degree temperatures in Richmond, Virginia, on Monday to proudly show off their firearms and its accompanying accessories.

The annual gun-rights rally was largely held to lobby lawmakers and protest the new set of gun-reform bills proposed by a Democratic majority in the Virginia House and Senate. The rally was clouded by safety concerns, which Virginia’s Democratic governor, Ralph Northam, said was prompted by “credible threats of violence.”

Northam cited state intelligence that indicated armed militia groups were planning to storm the Capitol during the event, prompting him to declare a state of emergency and issuing a temporary ban against firearms on Capitol grounds.

While thousands of unarmed gun enthusiasts entered the Capitol grounds to protest, thousands more stood outside the secure zone, toting their firearms and tactical accessories.

Here are some of the firearms and equipment the enthusiasts displayed at the rally:

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