On Friday, Iowa Attorney General Brenna Bird, Kansas Attorney General Kris Kobach, and Montana Attorney General Austin Knudsen co-led a coalition of 26 states and the Arizona State Legislature in a letter calling on the Biden Administration’s Bureau of Alcohol, Firearms, and Tobacco (“ATF”) to drop a proposed rule that violates the Second Amendment.
The proposed rule significantly expands the definition of a “firearms dealer” and imposes strict regulations on nearly all gun transactions. Any for-profit transaction, even between family members, will require the seller to be a registered firearms dealer or face significant penalties—including possible prison time. The new proposed rule even applies to Iowans selling a single gun. Transactions do not have to involve the exchange of money but could also include personal property or payment through service.
“The Biden Administration mandating that you register as a firearms dealer to sell a gun to a family member is unlawful and absurd,” said Attorney General Bird. “It’s a blatant assault on our Second Amendment rights and proves that the Biden Administration will stop at nothing to criminalize law-abiding gunowners. But we won’t stand for it. We’re fighting back to protect Iowans’ constitutional rights.”
The letter makes the case that if the ATF was serious about combatting violent crime, it would focus on enforcing the laws that are already on the books to hold violent criminals accountable and save lives. Instead, the ATF is targeting innocent Americans. That is unlawful and wrong. The ATF must change course.
The Biden Administration’s rule violates the Second Amendment and the Administrative Procedure Act, which requires that federal agencies fully consider the costs of a proposed rule—and that rule’s legality—before imposing it on the country.
Iowa co-led the letter with Kansas and Montana. They were joined by Alabama, Alaska, the Arizona State Legislature, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Kentucky, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wyoming.
Read the full letter here.