Republican Attorneys General Challenge Biden’s Firearm Background Check Rule in Federal Court
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Republican Attorneys General Challenge Biden’s Firearm Background Check Rule in Federal Court

President of the US - Joe Biden | Credits: Getty Images

United States: Twenty-six Republican jurists launched litigations Wednesday contesting a novel decree by the Biden administration mandating firearm vendors nationwide to conduct background checks on purchasers at gun exhibitions and other venues beyond physical establishments.

The litigations submitted in federal tribunals in Arkansas, Florida, and Texas aim to impede the enforcement of the recent decree proclaimed last month, which seeks to seal a gap enabling tens of thousands of firearms to be vented annually by unlicensed vendors who forego background checks to ascertain the legality of potential purchasers’ firearm possession, according to AP. 

The lawsuit contends that the fresh decree breaches the Second Amendment of the US Constitution and asserts that Democratic President Joe Biden lacks the prerogative to enact it.

“Congress has never enacted the ATF’s momentous expansion of firearm vendor licensing requisites into law, and President Biden lacks the unilateral authority to institute them,” articulated Arkansas Attorney General Tim Griffin in a declaration. “This litigation exemplifies the latest occasion of counterparts from other states and me reminding the President of his obligation to adhere to the law.”

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) refrained from commenting on the litigation. Biden administration functionaries have expressed confidence that the decree, which elicited over 380,000 public responses, would endure legal challenges, as outlined by the Associated Press. 

Amidst the intensification of the 2024 presidential election campaign, the litigation and ensuing potential legal skirmish could invigorate both factions — Republican electors advocating for reduced gun restrictions and Democratic proponents advocating for augmented constraints on firearm types and accessibility.

Biden has prominently positioned curbing gun-related violence as a pivotal facet of his administration and re-election campaign amidst the nation grappling with mounting occurrences of mass shootings and other fatalities. 

He established the White House Office of Gun Violence Prevention, helmed by Vice President Kamala Harris, and has urged Congress to outlaw so-termed assault weapons — a politically charged term denoting a category of potent firearms or semi-automatic extended rifles, such as an AR-15, capable of swift discharge of 30 rounds without reloading. Such proscription was previously avoided by Democrats, even in recent years.

Advocates for firearm regulation have long advocated for the closure of the aforementioned gun show loophole and have commended the novel decree on background checks, as claimed by AP. 

“If we neglect to modernize our national framework by closing these loopholes, the extent of lives lost to gun violence remains uncertain,” remarked Kris Brown, president of the firearm regulation organization Brady. “Brady will exert every effort to uphold this decree as we recognize its contribution toward a future devoid of gun-related violence.”