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Wednesday, January 5, 2022

Gun Ban Advocates Frustrated with Biden

We don't usually put much stock in anything posted at the Bloomberg gun ban mouthpiece known as The Trace, but in this case, it is probably pretty accurate when they write today that gun ban advocates are disappointed in the lack of results from Biden on their issue.

Many gun reform advocates say they are disappointed by how little Biden has accomplished in his first term. His record pales in comparison to the expansive agenda he ran on in 2020. He had promised, amid a surge in gun violence, to enact sweeping overhauls that gun reform advocates like Oliver supported. Biden’s gun agenda was central to his campaign, and distinguished him from competitors like Senator Bernie Sanders, which raised expectations even higher.

Leaders of major gun reform groups predicted that his first year in office, with Democrats also controlling Congress, would be an unprecedented period of progress. Now Democrats are expected to take losses in the House and Senate midterm elections — and Biden could be running out of time.
Biden has been reduced to so-called "executive actions" and rule making (which can be just as bad a legislation) but the big promises like banning modern sporting rifles can't be achieved without legislation.
When faced with repeated high-profile mass shootings, President Barack Obama turned to executive actions to promote his policies in areas where Congress wouldn’t budge. Biden is pursuing a similar strategy, but with less vigor. Earlier this year, as part of a first set of actions on guns, Biden directed the ATF to crack down on unserialized, difficult-to-trace ghost guns. The agency issued a proposed rule in May.

And in June, the ATF proposed new regulations on stabilizing braces, a type of device that effectively turns handguns into short-barreled rifles. The shooter in a March supermarket shooting in Boulder, Colorado, used this configuration. Biden directed the ATF to crack down on gun dealers who have a history of breaking rules, and he directed the Department of Justice to issue model laws that allow law enforcement to temporarily seize guns from dangerous people, known as red flag laws. Another rule requiring gun stores to sell secure firearm storage devices compatible with the firearms they’re selling is set to go into effect in February.
The gun ban groups don't think Biden has used the full force of his office.  
Still, there are questions about whether Biden is using the full might of the executive branch to curb gun violence. These actions fall short of his campaign promises, some of which he could fulfill without legislation: Using the power of the presidency, Biden could create a voluntary gun buyback program, enhance background checks, prohibit the importation of assault-style weapons, and reinstate an Obama-era policy aimed at keeping guns out of the hands of people unable to manage their affairs for mental health reasons.
Gun owners need to continue to be vigilant as we enter this election year.  The closer to the election we get, the harder it will be for Biden to get anything through legislatively, which means he will continue his "executive" overreach approach. 

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