Gun Owners of America Calls Out ATF for Undermining the Presidency
On October 27, 2020, Gun Owner of America Vice President Erich Pratt called out the the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) for a change it made in a well-established interpretation of the statutory and regulatory definition of “handguns” under the Gun Control Act (GCA).
Due to this change in interpretation, a number of handguns which fire ammunition that is usually used in rifles or handguns manufactured from receivers that have additionally been used to make rifles can no longer be imported. The agency apparently used new and stringent standards in a modified importation test in order to come to this conclusion. In a GOA press release, the revised importation test is “arbitrarily used to evaluate whether a weapon meets the statutory ‘sporting purposes’ requirement. Congress has never defined what ‘sporting purposes’ means.
Further, the ATF also hinted at how firearms that are legally imported “may wrongly have been approved for importation” and that these “firearms may require reevaluation.”
The scope of the suggested “reevaluation” is unclear. However, if the GCA interpretation is used for domestic firearms, then these weapons could fall under the National Firearms Act (NFA) definition of “Any Other Weapon (AOW).” If a firearm is categorized as an AOW, mandatory registration, taxation, travel restrictions, and a long waiting period would be slapped on it. At that point, gun owners would face criminal prosecution for possessing an unregistered NFA weapon. This kind of charge could have an individual facing a prison sentence of ten years and fines could reach $250,000.
Regard this new development, Erich Pratt declared “By disregarding orders to stand down, rogue ATF agents seem prepared to help usher in a Joe Biden Administration, especially because their actions appear to be purposefully timed to anger President Trump’s base immediately before an election.”
Despite an executive action from President Trump prohibiting the imposition of ‘new standards’ without express authorization by law, the apparent interpretation by a rogue and reckless ATF has implications that could criminalize millions of otherwise non-violent and law-abiding gun owners,” Pratt added. “This continues to demonstrate why the National Firearms Act should be repealed and the agency itself should be fully dismantled.
Pratt pointed to some of Trump’s successes in issuing executive orders that fire rogue government employees:
It also demonstrates why President Trump recently issued an Executive Order creating a new classification of ‘Schedule F’ employees. This new classification allows the President to ‘drain the swamp’ by firing policy-making employees who would rather go rogue than follow the law.
The GOA VP warned about the ATF’s rogue behavior and how it will mesh with a potential Biden administration:
The recent Honey Badger gun ban and revelation of absurd private classification rulings represents a pro-Biden ‘October Surprise’ by an out-of-control, anti-gun ATF. By disregarding orders to stand down, rogue ATF agents seem prepared to help usher in a Joe Biden Administration, especially because their actions appear to be purposefully timed to anger President Trump’s base immediately before an election.
ATF’s actions are just a taste of what is to come in Joe Biden’s gun controlled-America. The Biden gun control plan seeks to treat many commonly-owned, semi-automatic rifles as NFA weapons, which endangers the freedom of tens of millions of peaceful individuals who own these guns, possession in and of itself should not be a crime.
The ATF takes advantage of its bureaucratic status to sneak in its tyrannical acts under everyone’s noses. Thankfully, there are gun lobbies such as GOA who work tirelessly to expose such treachery. We need more of this kind of activism to expose just how nefarious the ATF is.