ASSAULT WEAPONS BAN
The Congressional House passed the Assault Weapons Ban bill on the final day of session, July 29, 2022. Not surprisingly, the vote was largely partisan and Gun Violence Prevention advocates anticipate a stall in the Senate.
Steve dettlebach confirmed
The Senate voted on Tuesday, July 12th to confirm Steve Dettelbach as President Biden’s nominee for Director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF). Dettlebach’s confirmation in the wake of high-profile mass shootings in Buffalo, Uvalde, and Highland Park — is a victory for both the Gun Violence Prevention movement and the Biden administration.
The Senate last confirmed an ATF nominee in 2013. Dettelbach is a former federal prosecutor and served as the US attorney for the Northern District of Ohio under President Barack Obama.
Safer Communities law
The Safer Communities Act swiftly moved through the House and to the President’s desk on June 25, 2022 — less than 48 hours after the Senate voted to pass the first significant gun safety bill in decades. The new law includes:
- Funds crisis intervention, including red flag laws to keep guns out of the hands of people who are a danger to themselves and to others.
- Finally closes what’s known as the “boyfriend loophole,” so if you assault your girlfriend or boyfriend you can’t buy or own a gun.
- Requires young people aged 18-21 to undergo enhanced background checks.
- Includes the first federal law that makes gun trafficking and straw purchases distinct federal crimes.
- Clarifies who needs to register as a federally licensed gun dealer and run background checks before selling a gun.
- Provides historic funding to address the youth mental health crisis in this country, especially the trauma experienced by survivors of gun violence.
- Invests in anti-violence programs to work directly with people who are most likely to commit gun crimes or become victims of gun crimes.
On June 23, 2022, the Supreme Court ruled against the New York gun law that required people to show “proper cause” to get a license to carry a concealed handgun outside the home. The vote was 6-3.
President Biden’s statement on this Supreme Court Ruling on Guns, “I am deeply disappointed by the Supreme Court’s ruling in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen. Since 1911, the State of New York has required individuals who would like to carry a concealed weapon in public to show a need to do so for the purpose of self-defense and to acquire a license. More than a century later, the United States Supreme Court has chosen to strike down New York’s long-established authority to protect its citizens. This ruling contradicts both common sense and the Constitution, and should deeply trouble us all.”
In April 2022, President Biden announced a final ATF rule banning the manufacturing the most accessible ghost guns, such as unserialized “buy build shoot” kits that individuals can buy online or at a store without a background check and can readily assemble into a working firearm at home.