Contact your elected officials to express your opinion on the ATF's Proposed Guidance Document (link inside)
Stop the ATF's Arbitrary Interpretation of the NFA copy
This week, the ATF proposed a guidance document—‘Objective Factors for Classifying Weapons with Stabilizing Braces’—on www.regulations.gov which is open for comment until January 1, 2020. We urge you to oppose this transparent power grab by the ATF.
FRAC has been aggressively advocating for the ATF to finally develop clear criteria for brace-equipped pistols that would give manufacturers and certainty. Instead, the document is a thinly veiled blueprint for the largest firearm registration and confiscation scheme in U.S. history.
ATF’s proposed guidance is less than meaningless and only contributes to further public confusion. The ATF broadly identifies several factors ATF purports to “consider,” including: type, caliber, weight and length, how the gun is marketed, length of pull, sights and scopes, peripheral accessories mounted, and rear surface area of the brace, among others. But there is no indication as how this open-ended list of factors will actually be applied.
By stating that “no single factor or combination of factors is necessarily dispositive,” the regulated gun industry is left guessing as to how to comply with the law. If a brace-equipped gun is “good” on some factors and “bad” on others how does the agency classify the weapon? On this fundamental question, the guidance is silent. And because the guidance claims that the list of factors “is not exhaustive and other factors may become relevant,” the ATF effectively purports to reserve authority to change the rules on law-abiding gun owners at its leisure.
Worse still, the factors themselves leave out any information that would make the guidance useful for industry. For example, the ATF says it will “consider” the “amount of rear contact surface area.” But what does that mean in any practical sense? How much surface area is a problem? How does one design a brace to have an acceptable “amount of rear surface area” without this information?
As a consequence, millions of Americans will be left wondering about the following otherwise straightforward questions:
Which calibers are ok?
What is the weight or length of pull limit?
What accessories can be mounted on a pistol?
By omitting key details, the ATF is codifying its “we’ll know it when we see it” approach to determinations—an act that that creates confusion and serves as little more than a power grab. Failing to ground these purported factors with any practical methodology opens the door for arbitrary decisionmaking untethered from ATF’s authority, public safety, and the rule of law. The guidance effectively claims limitless power to assess products that gives the agency maximum discretion and Americans minimum protection.
This proposed guidance says that it does not have the effect and force of law . . . yet. We believe that the White House is considering weighing in on this issue, but they will not do so unless we make our voices heard. The time is now to come together as a community of gun owners, retailers, and manufacturers to demand that President Trump preserve our Second Amendment rights.
This is our last chance to get this administration to intervene. We strongly urge you to contact the White House to demand they take swift action to stop and reverse ATF’s efforts to issue arbitrary and capricious decisions affecting millions of legal gun owners.