BREAKING: The White House instructs the DOJ to draft regulations for the Ghost Gun, AR Pistol, and Brace

Today the Biden Harris administration announces six initial measures to combat the gun violence epidemic. The recent high profile mass shootings in Boulder, which killed 10 people, and in Atlanta, in which eight people were killed, including six Asian-American women, underscored the intransigence of this epidemic. Gun violence takes lives and leaves lasting trauma in the communities of this country every day, even if it isn’t on the nightly news. In fact, cities across the country are in the midst of a historic surge in homicides, violence that disproportionately affects black and brown Americans. The President is determined to take action to reduce all forms of gun violence – community violence, mass shootings, domestic violence and firearm suicide.

President Biden reiterates his call for Congress to pass laws to reduce gun violence. Last month, a bipartisan coalition in the House passed two bills to fill loopholes in the gun background verification system. Congress should fill those loopholes and go further, including by closing “Freund” and tracking loopholes in which those currently found by the courts as abusers possess firearms, assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, prohibit immunity from the Release arms manufacturers from liability and invest in evidence-based violence interventions in the community. Congress should also pass appropriate national red flag law, as well as laws encouraging states to pass their own red flag laws.

However, this administration will not wait for Congress to take its own steps – entirely within the purview of the government and the Second Amendment – to save lives. Today the administration announces the following six first measures:

The Justice Department will issue a proposed rule within 30 days to stop the spread of “ghost guns”. We have a growing problem: criminals buy kits that contain almost all of the components and instructions to complete a firearm in just 30 minutes and use those firearms to commit crimes. When these firearms show up at crime scenes, they often cannot be traced back by law enforcement due to the lack of a serial number. The Justice Department will issue a proposed rule to stop the proliferation of these firearms.

The Department of Justice will issue a proposed rule within 60 days to clarify when a device marketed as a stabilizing strut will effectively transform a pistol into a short barrel rifle under the requirements of the National Firearms Act. The suspected shooter in last month’s bouldering tragedy appears to have used a pistol with an armrest that can make a firearm more stable and accurate while still hidden.

The Justice Department will issue a model red flag law for states within 60 days. Red flag laws allow family members or law enforcement agencies to seek a court order temporarily banning people in crisis from access to firearms if they pose a danger to themselves or others. The President urges Congress to pass appropriate national red flag law, as well as laws encouraging states to pass their own red flag laws. Meanwhile, model legislation released by the Justice Department will make it easier for states wishing to pass red flag laws to do so.

The administration invests in evidence-based violence interventions in the community. Community violent interventions are proven strategies for reducing gun violence in urban communities through instruments other than incarceration. As cities across the country see a historic surge in homicides, the Biden-Harris administration is taking a number of steps to prioritize investment in community violence.

  • The American Jobs Plan calls for an eight-year investment of $ 5 billion to support community violence intervention programs. An essential part of community violence intervention strategies is to connect individuals with vocational training and employment opportunities.
  • The U.S. Department of Health is organizing a webinar and toolkit to educate states on how to use Medicaid to reimburse certain community violence intervention programs, such as hospital-based violence interventions.
  • Five federal agencies are making changes to 26 different programs to channel vital support for community violence intervention programs as quickly as possible. These changes mean that we can increasingly invest in community violence while we wait for Congress to provide additional funding. Read more about these agency campaigns here.

The Justice Department will issue an annual report on the arms trade. In 2000, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF) published a report summarizing information about its investigations into the arms trade. In this way, firearms are diverted to the illegal market, where they can easily end up in the hands of dangerous people. Since the report was released, state, local and federal decision-makers have relied on its data to better thwart common arms trade channels. However, there is good reason to believe that the arms trade channels have changed since 2000, for example with the rise of online sales and the proliferation of ghost guns. The Justice Department will issue a new, comprehensive report on the arms trade and annual updates necessary to provide policy makers with the information they need to tackle the arms trade today.

The President will appoint David Chipman as Director of the Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms Bureau. ATF is the key agency in enforcing our gun laws and requires a certified director to do the job to the best of their ability. But ATF hasn’t had a confirmed director since 2015. Chipman was with ATF for 25 years and is now working to promote gun safety laws using common sense.

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