This story was originally published by the WND News Center.
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) has launched a new “zero tolerance” policy that will make it easier to revoke gun stores’ federal firearms licenses, according to Second Amendment advocates reacting to a leaked copy of the guidelines.
The internal document says the bureau “has zero tolerance for willful violations that greatly affect public safety and ATF’s ability to trace firearms recovered in violent crimes” and that “revocation” of the federal firearms licensee (FFL’s) license “is the assumed action” with violations,” reports Fox News Digital, which acquired the 12-page ATF document titled, “Federal Firearms Administrative Action Policy and Procedures” (see full memo below).
Among those violations for which “revocation is the assumed action” (barring “extraordinary circumstances”) are, according to the internal memo:
- Transfer of a firearm to a prohibited person knowing or having reasonable cause to believe the transferee is a prohibited person”;
- Failing to perform a background check;
- “Failure to respond to a firearm trace request within 24 hours after receipt of the request”; and
- “making a false or fictitious written statement in the FFL’s required records or in applying for a firearms license.”
The Jan. 28 ATF document was first obtained by the pro-Second-Amendment organization Gun Owners of America (GOA), which shared it with Fox. The “no-compromise” gun-rights lobby group fears the new policy is part of a larger Biden effort to accumulate information on law-abiding gun owners for potential escalating confiscations.
The ATF is in “confiscation mode,” Second Amendment Foundation founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb told the Daily Caller News Foundation, commenting on another Biden overreach on “pistol braces” announced in January. The new policy has outraged Second Amendment advocates and is headed for a court challenge.
GOA tweeted Friday that the ATF “zero tolerance” policy “is shutting down gun stores left and right,” and also tweeted: “What does this mean? It means if the ATF deems any FFL action a ‘willful violation,’ then they skip all warning letters & conferences and: Revoke, [Fine] or Suspend the gun store.”
On page six under “Revocation Under 18 U.S.C., Sect. 923(e),” the document states, “ATF does not have to establish a history of prior violations to demonstrate willfulness.”
For News reports that “when an FFL loses its license, it will likely close shop and be required to send its gun purchase records — which are now required to be kept indefinitely — straight to the ATF.” The agency, which is under the Department of Justice, 2021 began “updating its guidelines established under the Trump administration,” according to the report.
Reacting to the ATF guidance, Aiden Johnston, GOA’s director of federal affairs, told Fox News Digital that “Joe Biden has weaponized the ATF against gun owners and the firearms industry in an attempt to violate the Second Amendment and expand his illegal gun registry.”
“Rather than targeting those who display clear negligence and disregard for the law, ATF now revokes licenses without warning at the discovery of a first mistake by honest gun dealers,” Johnston said.
GOA tweeted Friday: “Zero tolerance. Ok, what are the implications? Well. Anytime an FFL has [its] license revoked and they close, they have to send ALL of their 4473s [ATF Form 4473, required for “firearms transaction record revisions”] to the ATF (where they are kept indefinitely!). But they don’t have a registry, right?”
GOA also tweeted, “[The] ATF now revokes licenses without warning at the discovery of a first mistake by honest gun dealers. [Then] ATF adds their records to its digital gun registry that has nearly a billion gun and gun owner records.”
On Thursday Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton and Gun Owners of America filed a joint lawsuit against the ATF’s “pistol brace rule,” by which the Biden Administration would ban pistols with attached “stabilizing braces,” Breitbart News reported. The “rule portends the registration of millions of guns,” according to another Breitbart report.
Following the Biden rule’s announcement, 48 GOP senators rallied together to condemn the pistol brace and rifle reclassifications, according to a letter sent to U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland and reported by Daily Caller News Foundation.
“The proposed rule is worse than merely abdicating your responsibility to protect Americans from criminals; you’re threatening to turn law-abiding Americans into criminals by imposing the largest executive branch-initiated gun registration and confiscation program in American history,” the senators wrote in the letter, as WND reported.