Bump Stocks: An admission that “Acting” AG Whitaker’s signature wasn’t valid

Barr’s history on gun control makes this no great surprise.

New AG rubber stamps illegal bump stock rule change
Scheduled to be published on March 14th, newly appointed U.S. Attorney General William Barr will ratify a final rule from the ATF that determined bump stocks to be a “machine gun”.

This reaffirmation is in response to a federal lawsuit challenging then acting Attorney General Whitaker’s unconstitutional appointment to the position, who originally ratified the final rule.

Clearly, the government felt their defense of Whitaker’s validity was weak (which, having read the laws, I knew). They hope to walk into court and say, “That’s part’s moot Your Honor; the confirmed Attorney General signed it, too.”

But they just opened up another can of worms. Whitaker signed the rule on December 18, 2018. The rule — which the government just effectively admitted wasn’t valid — was officially published in the Federal Register on December 26.

Current possessors of bump-stock-type devices will have until the effective date of the rule (90 days from the date of publication in the Federal Register) to comply.

If Barr has to sign it again to shut down arguments over the validity, it has to be republished in the Register again, now that it has finally been “properly” signed.

And that resets the countdown clock.

So publish it, as now scheduled on March 14, 2019, and start the new 90 day countdown, with a new deadline of June 13, 2019. In accordance with the Administrative Procedures Act.

Bump-Stock-Type Devices Proposed Rulemaking

In case you haven’t commented on the proposed rule to ban bump-fire stocks, you should. Currently victim disarmers seem to be trying to flood the system with pro-ban comments.

Comment Here. Comments are due by June 27, 2018, at 11:59 PM ET.

You might consider something along these lines:

I oppose any rule redefining bump-stock-type devices (BSTD) as machineguns or any other type of firearm.

1. The description of how and what BSTDs do is grossly incorrect. While they assist in trigger reset, each shot fired still requires a separate operation of the trigger.

2. BSTDs do not increase the theoretical maximum rate of fire. In fact, since they bleed off recoil energy in order to assist in trigger reset, they can DECREASE the theoretical maximum rate of fire.

3. The The description of how and what BSTDs do conflicts with existing legislation defining machineguns (multiple rounds fired per operation of the trigger) as each round fired still requires manual operation of the trigger.

4. The rule is unenforceable: a) with no grandfathering it violates the Fifth Amendment as a taking without just compensation, b) no one knows how many BSTDs there are or where they are making confiscation without further Fifth Amendment violations impossible, c) the language is so vague that it would apply to any semiautomatic firearm that can be held in the non-firing hand (any semiautomatic firearm that can be so held can be bump-fired).

5. MILLER defined weapons which may be banned/regulated as those that are not in common military use; if a firearm with a BSTD is suddenly a “machinegun” — which are in common military use, they are protected under the SCOTUS MILLER decision, opening the ATF to lawsuits. You really don’t want to go there.