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Biden “Justice Department” Establishes Clearinghouse for the Seizure of Lawfully-Owned Guns

Monday, April 1, 2024

Biden “Justice Department” Establishes Clearinghouse for the Seizure of Lawfully-Owned Guns

In June of 2022, the NRA announced its opposition to the so-called Bipartisan Safer Communities Act (BSCA). This legislation, we warned, “can be abused to restrict lawful gun purchases, infringe upon the rights of law-abiding Americans, and use federal dollars to fund gun control measures being adopted by state and local politicians.” We also noted the bill left “too much discretion in the hands of government officials” with “undefined and overbroad provisions – inviting interference with our constitutional freedoms.” Sure enough, the Biden administration went on to establish an entire office within the White House dedicated to reading the BSCA as expansively as possible and to using every authority and appropriation contained in the legislation to restrict Second Amendment rights to the maximum extent.

Last week saw another grim milestone in this effort when the Biden Justice Department teamed up with the Bloomberg School of Public Health at John Hopkins University to launch the National Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO) Resource Center. This program will use your tax dollars to promote state “red flag” firearm seizure laws through raising awareness, advocacy, training, and the gathering of resources … down to links that can be used to access fillable forms for filing “red flag” applications.

The Center’s funding comes from $750 million the BSCA earmarked for “state crisis intervention programs,” which include “extreme risk protection order programs.” Colloquially known as “red flag” laws, these regimes allow police, health practitioners, family members, and – in some cases – even teachers and community members, to petition courts to suspend an individual’s Second Amendment rights and to order the seizure of otherwise lawfully-owned guns. Many of these laws allow for “ex parte” emergency orders that authorize firearm seizures before the respondent even has an opportunity to answer the petitioner’s allegations. Those allegations, moreover, do not have to assert illegal activity, just vague concerns of the potential for future dangerousness.

Across the states, untold thousands of guns have been seized under these regimes from owners who did not stand accused, much less convicted, of any crime. And at least one fatality has occurred during the execution of a “red flag” order when the respondent allegedly brandished his gun in the presence of officers serving the order.

On the other hand, the typical red flag law provides no mechanisms for the stabilization or incapacitation of the supposedly dangerous individual, other than firearm prohibitions and seizures. Respondents may be otherwise left to their own devices and, indeed, left in possession of other types of weapons or means of committing lethal harm. The point – the entire point – is ensuring respondents cannot exercise the right to keep and bear firearms.   

Biden’s Justice Department doled out $2 million to the Bloomberg School of Public Health for its part in the effort, which includes a website that extols the benefits of red flag laws, summarizes existing state red flag laws, and provides training in the laws’ implementation. It also advertises training seminars to be held on the laws throughout the year and archives videos and other resources from past events. Even more ominously, the website in many cases links to fillable forms that can actually be used to apply for a red flag order in a given jurisdiction. It is about as close to “point, click, ban” as can be imagined (although completed forms must be printed and properly filed with the local courts).

Some members of Congress reacted with outrage to the DOJ/Bloomberg effort, with some claiming it exceeds the authorities established by the BSCA; U.S. House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan (R-OH) announced an investigation into the newly formed center. The Biden administration, rarely one to let legal misgivings interfere with its agenda, is nevertheless aggressively pushing ahead, “challenging” the 29 states that have not passed red flag laws to do so and promising to reward those that come aboard with millions in federal grants.

Whatever plausible deniability supporters of the BSCA could claim when the pending legislation was being promoted as a “modest step,” it is long past the time when it could be characterized as anything other than a sprawling gun control omnibus whose pernicious effects are still unfolding. Stay tuned, as we have warned, for the Biden administration’s push for “universal” background checks, also brought to you by the BSCA. That effort could be unleashed at any time.

Give firearm prohibition advocates an inch, and they will take a mile. That should be the takeaway of the BSCA for anyone who thinks even a “modest” proposal will not be abused by those who seek to destroy the right to keep and bear arms.

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ATF Skirts Legal Formalities and Springs Another Gun Control Rule on the American People

News  

Monday, April 22, 2024

ATF Skirts Legal Formalities and Springs Another Gun Control Rule on the American People

On Friday, ATF provided the unpleasant surprise of yet another rulemaking to implement the noxious Bipartisan Safer Communities Act (BSCA). 

“Unquestionably in Common Use Today” – Study Confirms National Standard for Detachable Magazine Capacity is Over Ten Rounds

News  

Monday, April 22, 2024

“Unquestionably in Common Use Today” – Study Confirms National Standard for Detachable Magazine Capacity is Over Ten Rounds

Along with “assault weapon” bans, so-called “high capacity” magazine restrictions are a cornerstone of modern gun control.

Colorado: Gun Control Bills Pass House After Weekend Votes

Sunday, April 21, 2024

Colorado: Gun Control Bills Pass House After Weekend Votes

After holding late-night votes until close to midnight on Saturday, April 20th, the Colorado House passed three anti-gun bills on their third reading, including liability insurance mandates, an 11% excise tax, and a state-level permitting systems for FFL's. 

NRA Scores Legal Victory Against ATF; “Pistol Brace Rule” Enjoined From Going Into Effect Against NRA Members

Monday, April 1, 2024

NRA Scores Legal Victory Against ATF; “Pistol Brace Rule” Enjoined From Going Into Effect Against NRA Members

NRA Members Among the Largest Class Protected from Draconian Rule

NRA Scores Legal Victory in Dispute with DC Attorney General

News  

Thursday, April 18, 2024

NRA Scores Legal Victory in Dispute with DC Attorney General

The National Rifle Association of America (NRA) has announced a legal victory in a high-profile governance matter brought by the Office of the Attorney General for the District of Columbia (DCAG).

With a Stroke of the Pen, Biden ATF Criminalizes Tens of Thousands of Private Firearm Sellers

News  

Friday, April 12, 2024

With a Stroke of the Pen, Biden ATF Criminalizes Tens of Thousands of Private Firearm Sellers

We have long been warning of the rule the Biden ATF has been preparing to redefine who is considered a firearm “dealer” under U.S. law.  The administration’s explicit objective was to move as close to so-called “universal background ...

Nevada Supreme Court Upholds “Ghost Gun” Regulations

Monday, April 22, 2024

Nevada Supreme Court Upholds “Ghost Gun” Regulations

The Supreme Court of Nevada upheld Nevada’s regulations on so-called “ghost guns” in Sisolak v. Polymer80, holding that the statutes are not unconstitutionally vague.

Colorado: Semi-Auto Ban Passes House and "Sensitive Places" Expansion to be Heard in Committee

Monday, April 15, 2024

Colorado: Semi-Auto Ban Passes House and "Sensitive Places" Expansion to be Heard in Committee

On Sunday, HB24-1292 the semi-auto ban, received final passage in the House and has been transmitted to the Senate where it awaits a committee assignment. 

Joe Biden Seems to Hate Cannons as Much as He Hates the Truth

News  

Monday, April 15, 2024

Joe Biden Seems to Hate Cannons as Much as He Hates the Truth

For quite some time, we’ve talked about Joe Biden and his gift for gaffes. Whether it is him losing battles with his teleprompter, his train of thought spectacularly derailing, forgetting which politicians have passed away, or simply mumbling ...

Maine: Contact the Governor and Urge Her to Veto All Gun Control Bills!

Thursday, April 18, 2024

Maine: Contact the Governor and Urge Her to Veto All Gun Control Bills!

After a nearly 24-hour marathon legislative session, the Maine House and Senate finally adjourned until "Veto Day" in the coming weeks. 

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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.