Last week the Biden administration announced six initial actions to address the epidemic of gun violence.
- The Justice Department, within 30 days, will issue a proposed rule to help stop the proliferation of “ghost guns.” Ghost guns are guns assembled from parts in kits, so they cannot be traced by serial number.
- The Justice Department, within 60 days, will issue a proposed rule to make clear when a device marketed as a stabilizing brace effectively turns a pistol into a short-barreled rifle subject to the requirements of the National Firearms Act. This is what happened in the Boulder shooting, making a pistol even more deadly.
- The Justice Department, within 60 days, will publish model “red flag” legislation for states. Red flag laws allow family members or law enforcement to petition for a court order temporarily removing guns from the household of a person who presents a danger to themselves or others.
- The Administration is investing in evidence-based community violence interventions. The American Jobs Plan proposes a $5 billion investment over eight years to support community violence intervention programs.
- The Justice Department will issue an annual report on firearms trafficking. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco & Firearms released a report in 2000, but much has changed. We need regular and comprehensive reporting.
- The President will nominate David Chipman to serve as Director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms. ATF has not had a confirmed director since 2015.
In the first two months of this year, Los Angeles Police Department officers fielded 570 reports of shots fired, up 88% from the 303 incidents during same time frame in 2020 — and 267 people were hit by gunfire, a 141% increase from the 111 people wounded in the time frame in 2020.
We need Congress to act to pass comprehensive legislation to reduce gun violence, including closing gun background check loopholes, reinstating an assault weapons ban and also high capacity magazines, repealing gun manufacturers’ immunity from lawsuits, passing a national “red flag” law, and investing in community-based solutions.
The Trump administration and Congress refused to act to-date. Thank you to President Biden for stepping up to save lives.