27 Attorneys General: Congress Must Act Against ATF Pistol Brace Rule

pistol brace
AWR Hawkins/Breitbart News

Twenty-seven Attorneys Generals sent a letter to House Speaker Kevin McCarthy on May 25, 2023, urging Congress to act against the ATF’s AR-pistol stabilizer brace rule before it goes into effect June 1, 2023.

The AGs wrote:

The pistol brace rule is an egregious overreach. For over a decade, ATF has recognized that pistols equipped with stabilizing braces are not short-barreled rifles subject to the registration and tax requirements of the Gun Control Act of 1968 and the National Firearms Act. ATF has now reversed course, without statutory authority, and is requiring registration of nearly all pistols with stabilizing braces by the end of May. If an individual fails to register or otherwise dispose of a pistol equipped with a brace, then that person will be guilty of a serious federal felony.

They noted that although they have filed a lawsuit, the court system is not ultimate fix: “We urge you to schedule a vote on that resolution early enough to complete the CRA process before the rule’s May 31, 2023, registration deadline. Although we have filed a lawsuit challenging the pistol brace rule—and have sought preliminary injunctive relief—we need Congress’s help, too.”

The Attorneys Generals note that Congressional action would focus on passage of H.J. Res. 44, which has 189 House sponsors and 47 Senate sponsors.

The letter to McCarthy was signed by Attorneys General from West Virginia, Texas, Alaska, Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Ohio, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah, Virginia, and Wyoming.

Breitbart News interviewed Rep. Andrew Clyde (R) on Wednesday and he urged his fellow Republicans to rally in support of H.J. Res. 44.

Breitbart News reported that H.J. Res. 44 passed out of the House Judiciary Committee on April 19, by a vote of 23-15 and is now waiting for action before the full House.

Clyde told Breitbart News, “The ATF has gone rogue here, and they need to be reined in, and this is one of the ways that we’re going to do it.”

Gun Owners of America’s Aidan Johnston spoke to Breitbart News about H.J. Res. 44, saying, “The House of Representatives needs to act the moment they return to Washington. The resolution of disapproval will go a long way in sending the message to this tyrannical administration and the courts that the ATF far exceeded its statutory authority by banning millions of pistols.”

AWR Hawkins is an award-winning Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and the writer/curator of Down Range with AWR Hawkins, a weekly newsletter focused on all things Second Amendment, also for Breitbart News. He is the political analyst for Armed American Radio and a Turning Point USA Ambassador. He was a Visiting Fellow at the Russell Kirk Center for Cultural Renewal in 2010. and he holds a Ph.D. in Military History, with a focus on the Vietnam War (brown water navy), U.S. Navy since Inception, the Civil War, and Early Modern Europe. Follow him on Instagram: @awr_hawkins. You can sign up to get Down Range at breitbart.com/downrange. Reach him directly at awrhawkins@breitbart.com.


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