UPDATED 7:35 PM PT – Friday, December 25, 2020
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms is withdrawing guidance for proposed gun regulation.
On Wednesday, the ATF said it would no longer move to re-classify certain weapons with pistol braces as short-barreled rifles. This announcement came after pressure from 90 members of Congress.
In a letter to the attorney general earlier this week, representatives said the new guideline would turn law-abiding gun owners into criminals overnight because short-barreled rifles require more paperwork for approval.
Congress also criticized the Bureau’s guidance as being too vague, given the wording of the proposal, which suggested that the ATF determine each firearm’s classification on a case-by-case basis.
The government agency said they would reclassify weapons based on the firearm’s features, which included its type, caliber, weight and length.
According to reports, re-designating these firearms would have cost the industry’s manufacturers as much as $2 billion. In the meantime, pro-Second Amendment groups are calling the move a win for constitutional rights.
On Twitter on Wednesday, the NRA thanked members of Capitol Hill for their work in upholding gun rights.
BREAKING: @RepRichHudson and 89 other members of Congress signed a letter opposing ATF’s recent pistol brace guidance. Thank you to all NRA members and gun owners who contacted their members of Congress and demanded they protect #2A.
— NRA (@NRA) December 23, 2020
However, the Director of the Firearms Policy Coalition expressed caution. In a statement, he said that government regulators are still hostile toward law-abiding Americans, adding the FPC will carefully monitor ATF policies.