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NRA Statement on Trump Administration's Aggressive Enforcement of Federal Firearm Laws

Friday, July 28, 2017

NRA Statement on Trump Administration's Aggressive Enforcement of Federal Firearm Laws

Fairfax, Va.— Three months after President Donald Trump signed an executive order to crack down on illegal firearm possession, prosecutions of these crimes have risen by 23 percent.  Violent criminals are now facing consequences for their illegal actions. At the same time, the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding gun owners are being respected under the Trump administration.

“The National Rifle Association applauds President Donald Trump and Attorney General Jeff Sessions for understanding that prosecuting violent criminals and protecting the rights of law-abiding gun owners are not mutually exclusive ideas,” said Chris W. Cox, executive director, National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action. “The Department of Justice report released today shows the administration’s commitment to getting violent criminals and gang members off our streets.  After suffering an all-time low during the Obama administration, federal prosecutions of illegal firearm possession are now being taken seriously.”  

The facts:

  • Charges of unlawful possession of a gun – mostly by convicted felons – are up 23 percent in the second quarter of 2017 from the same time period in 2016.
  • The number of defendants charged with the crime of using a firearm in a crime of violence or drug trafficking has increased by 10 percent.
  • The DOJ is on pace to prosecute the highest number of federal firearms cases since 2005.
  • During the Obama administration, federal prosecutions against individuals attempting to illegally buy a firearm dropped 40 percent.
  • During the Obama administration, prosecutions of unlawful possession of a firearm by a person subject to a court order dropped a whopping 66 percent.

“This report demonstrates that President Trump and Attorney General Sessions are making America safe again,” Cox concluded. “This is a complete reversal from the eight long years of the Obama administration, which ignored violent criminals while trying to destroy the rights of law-abiding gun owners.”


Established in 1871, the National Rifle Association is America's oldest civil rights and sportsmen's group. More than five million members strong, NRA continues to uphold the Second Amendment and advocates enforcement of existing laws against violent offenders to reduce crime. The Association remains the nation's leader in firearm education and training for law-abiding gun owners, law enforcement and the armed services. Be sure to follow the NRA on Facebook at NRA on Facebook and Twitter @NRA.

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Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.