According to Empower Oversight, a whistleblower group representing IRS agents in the Hunter Biden case, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) is preparing to implement a new rule. This rule would regulate private gun sales and mandate a background check conducted by the FBI. The group has expressed concerns over this move, stating that it would be an unconstitutional power grab. They also claim to have received information from two sources regarding the upcoming rule.
In a letter addressed to U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland, Empower Oversight highlighted that the White House had instructed the ATF to make this change. They further revealed that the ATF has already drafted a 1,300-page document in support of the rule, which aims to effectively prohibit private firearm sales by mandating background checks for every transaction. Empower Oversight firmly believes that only Congress has the authority to enact such a modification, citing a 1986 law that explicitly prohibited background checks for firearm sales between private individuals.
“Such an expansive rule that treats all private citizens the same as federal firearms licensees would circumvent the separation of powers in the Constitution, which grants ‘all legislative Powers’ to Congress while requiring that the President ‘take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed,’” the letter said.
“To the extent such a rule prevents the private sale of firearms, it would also clearly violate the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution, which declares that ‘the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed,’” it added.
Empower Oversight highlighted the possibility of clashes between ATF agents and individuals, emphasizing two instances of violence in the 1990s that stemmed from federal raids as illustrations.
“The lessons of the Ruby Ridge and Waco standoffs should make clear that attempting to enforce such an expansive regulation could endanger countless ATF field agents who are forced to serve as the face of the Biden Administration in going after private firearms owners for constitutionally-protected firearms sales,” the letter noted.
In March, President Joe Biden signed an executive order requiring the federal government to “clarify the definition of who is engaged in the business of dealing in firearms, and thus required to become Federal firearms licensees in order to increase compliance with the Federal background check requirement for firearm sales.”
In a shocking admission, he stated that the goal is to “move us as close as we can to universal background checks.”
Later on, the ATF presented a suggested regulation that caused apprehension among supporters of the Second Amendment. This resulted in anxieties that the government was trying to enforce a requirement where any individual selling a single firearm online, even privately, would need to register as a Federal Firearms Licensee (FFL).
The 1986 law made clear that the “business” of selling firearms “shall not include a person who makes occasional sales, exchanges, or purchases of firearms for the enhancement of a personal collection or for a hobby, or who sells all or part of his personal collection of firearms.”
Gun sales have reached unprecedented levels during President Biden’s tenure, as an increasing number of Americans express apprehension about the surge in violent crime and the looming threat of terrorism, particularly in the aftermath of the October attack on Israel by Hamas, which resulted in the tragic loss of nearly 1,400 lives.
According to the Washington Examiner, the sales of firearms have skyrocketed to over 14 million, with November witnessing record-breaking figures. This surge in gun sales can be attributed to the perception of deteriorating crime rates in cities governed by Democrats, as well as the numerous encounters with illegal immigrants, many of whom originate from countries known for sponsoring terrorism, that have occurred throughout the past year.