Biden to target 'ghost guns,' stabilizing braces in new gun control actions

Ross Houston
April 8, 2021

On the campaign trail, Biden said he would ban online sales of firearms, close the so-called Charleston loophole and promised to pursue measures that would keep guns away from those who could hurt themselves or others.

President Joe Biden will unveil measures on Thursday aimed at curbing rampant USA gun violence, especially seeking to prevent the spread of untraceable "ghost guns", White House officials said. Gun control activists and some of Biden's fellow Democrats in Congress had pleaded with the White House to name a person to the post.

The ATF has not had a confirmed permanent director since 2015.

The president is also expected announce that his administration is investing in evidence-based community violence interventions that provides strategies for "reducing gun violence in urban communities through tools other than incarceration", according to a fact-sheet shared by the White House.

Biden has faced increasing pressure to act after a spate of mass shootings across the recent weeks - including rampages in massage spas in Atlanta and a grocery store in Boulder, Colorado. Chipman, who spent some two decades as an ATF agent, is now a senior policy advisor to Giffords, the advocacy group set up by former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona after she was shot and severely wounded at a campaign event.

While waiting for Congress to act on the $5 billion request, the administration will direct more than two dozen federal agencies to look at existing accounts to find money that can be used to support such programs.

The Biden administration has been working on gun control measures for months that would limit gun violence without starting a legal battle that could lead to courts quickly dismantling the policies.

The National Rifle Association said it would fight Mr Biden's executive actions.

Chipman's extensive contacts with the groups that advocate greater regulation of firearms could assuage some of the complaints that the administration has been slow to move on gun issues. But gun-control advocates have said that while they were heartened by signs from the White House that they took the issue seriously, they've been disappointed by the lack of early action.

Biden himself expressed uncertainty late last month when asked if he had the political capital to pass new gun control proposals, telling reporters, 'I haven't done any counting yet'.

A semi-automatic resembling the iconic USA military M16 rifle, the AR-15 has become reviled by many as the weapon of choice in a string of mass murders. Ghost guns have increasingly turned up at crime scenes and in recent years have been turning up more and more when federal agents are purchasing guns in undercover operations from gang members and other criminals. These guns do not have commercial serial numbers and are hard to track.

As vice president under Obama, he took a role in helping craft gun control proposals, most of which stalled on Capitol Hill.

The critical component in building an untraceable gun is what is known as the lower receiver, a part typically made of metal or polymer.

While Psaki wouldn't give us a preview, Politico's sources were more specific about Biden's intentions.

Other reports by iNewsToday