Feds used secret form to strip citizen of 2A rights as part of plea deal

Gabe Kaminsky of the Washington Examiner has been doing a great job of covering the scandalous use of a secret form used by the FBI and Secret Service that compelled individuals to “voluntarily” give up their right to keep and bear arms during the Obama and Trump administration. Thanks to Gun Owners of America’s invaluable work in uncovering these documents through a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit, we know that the form was used on at least 60 individuals, and now Kaminsky reports that in at least one case the form appeared to have been used as plea bargain bait.

The U.S. government conditioned a plea agreement with a defendant stipulating they sign a secret form, which was not authorized through Congress and has been slammed as “unconstitutional” by Republican lawmakers, that stripped their rights to buy, own, or use firearms, documents show.

Between 2011 and 2019, the FBI, Secret Service, and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement coordinated to obtain signatures on an internal form from at least 60 U.S. citizens that stripped their gun rights, according to newly obtained records and multiple Washington Examiner reports. In at least one instance, the bureau and Secret Service worked behind closed doors with what appears to be a government prosecutor who conditioned signing of the form as part of a legal case, the Washington Examiner has learned.

“Dear Agent [redacted],” reads a June 10, 2019, letter written by a lawyer to a Secret Service agent in West Palm Beach, Florida. “You will find enclosed the NICS firearm form which has been signed by my client and his doctor. This is being provided in compliance with [redacted] plea agreement. Yours sincerely.”

It’s unclear what the 2019 defendant was being charged with or why the FBI and Secret Service had involvement. The FBI redacted the case number on the document, which was obtained by the firearms rights group Gun Owners of America through the Freedom of Information Act and shared with the Washington Examiner.

There are still some very basic questions about the form’s existence that have not been answered by the FBI or the Secret Service, including what agency developed the form and why it was put into use without any Congressional notification. Well, actually I think we know the answer to that last question. Given that there is no provision in federal law allowing someone to voluntarily give up their Second Amendment rights and prohibit themselves from passing a NICS check, there’s good reason why these agencies wanted to keep congressional watchdogs and the general public about the existence of these forms.

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Biden to sign executive order to require background checks on more gun sales

President Biden is expected to announce an executive order on Tuesday that would expand background checks to more firearm sales by expanding the statutory definition of a firearms dealer, the White House said.

Biden is set to sign the order during a trip to Monterey Park, California, where he will meet with families and the community impacted by the mass shooting that killed 11 and injured nine others in January. The White House said the executive order will bring the U.S. “as close to universal background checks as possible” without additional legislation.

Under the executive order, Biden is also directing Attorney General Merrick Garland to develop and implement a plan to prevent former federally licensed firearms dealers, whose licenses have been revoked or surrendered, from continuing to engage in the business of dealing in firearms.

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The DOJ Says Marijuana Use, Which Biden Thinks Should Not Be a Crime, Nullifies the Second Amendment

President Joe Biden thinks it is unfair that people convicted of simple marijuana possession face lingering consequences for doing something that he says should not be treated as a crime. Biden cited those burdens last October, when he announced a mass pardon of low-level federal marijuana offenders, which he said would help “thousands of people who were previously convicted of simple possession” and “who may be denied employment, housing, or educational opportunities as a result.” Yet the Biden administration, which recently began accepting applications for pardon certificates aimed at ameliorating those consequences after dragging its feet for five months, is actively defending another blatantly unjust disability associated with cannabis consumption: the loss of Second Amendment rights.

Under federal law, it is a felony, punishable by up to 15 years in prison, for an “unlawful user” of a “controlled substance” to possess firearms. The ban applies to all cannabis consumers, even if they live in one of the 37 states that have legalized medical or recreational use. That disability, a federal judge in Oklahoma ruled last month, is not “consistent with this Nation’s historical tradition of firearm regulation”—the constitutional test established by the Supreme Court’s 2022 decision in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen. The Justice Department recently filed a notice indicating that it intends to appeal the decision against the gun ban for marijuana users.

The Biden administration’s defense of the ban relies on empirically and historically dubious assertions about the sort of people who deserve to exercise the constitutional right to keep and bear arms. Among other things, the Justice Department argues that “the people” covered by the Second Amendment do not include Americans who break the law, no matter how trivial the offense. It also argues that marijuana users are ipso facto untrustworthy and unvirtuous, which it says makes them ineligible for gun rights.

According to the Biden administration, the original understanding of the right to arms included exceptions broad enough to encompass people who consume any intoxicant that legislators might one day decide to prohibit. It says the law criminalizing gun possession by cannabis consumers is analogous to laws targeting “intoxicated” people who carry guns in public places.

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FBI worked secretly with hospitals to strip US citizens’ gun rights, documents show

The FBI coordinated secretly with hospitals and medical centers to strip U.S. citizens of their rights to own, buy, or even use firearms , according to a trove of internal documents obtained by the Washington Examiner.

Behind closed doors and without congressional approval, the FBI has worked hand in hand with the Secret Service and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement to strip over two dozen people of their gun rights with internal forms, records show. On the heels of this revelation by the Washington Examiner in December 2022, newly obtained documents and emails shed light on how the bureau apparently received a helping hand from medical facilities to waive gun rights from at least five people.

“Any time you have evidence of private entities coordinating with federal agents to strip Americans of their rights, the public should be alarmed and demanding answers and action,” said Aidan Johnston, federal affairs director for Gun Owners of America, a firearms rights group. “This is just the latest terrifying new instance of the illegal NICS self-submission form being used in nefarious ways, and those who used it to violate the public’s trust must be held to account.”

Between 2016 and 2019, the FBI presented forms to U.S. citizens at their homes and in other undisclosed locations that registered them with the bureau’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System, the Washington Examiner previously reported . Newly obtained records, however, date the FBI’s usage of the form back to 2011.

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Biden vows to ban assault weapons ‘come hell or high water’

President Biden said in a speech on Wednesday that he’s going to ban assault weapons and high capacity magazines “come hell or high water.”

Biden made the comments at the House Democratic Caucus Issues Conference in Baltimore, Maryland, on Wednesday night.

“I know it may make some of you uncomfortable,but that little state above me, Delaware is one of them, hasthe highest rate, one of the highest rates of gun ownership. But guess what? We’re going to ban assault weapons again come hell or high water and high capacity magazines. When we did it last time to reduce mass deaths,” Biden said. 

Biden’s comments come after three students were killed on Feb. 13 at Michigan State University, injuring another six people. The suspected gunman, Anthony McRae, later killed himself before police could arrest him.

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Department of Defense Panel: Prohibit Gun Sales to Troops Under Age 25

A panel commissioned by the Department of Defense (DOD), the Suicide Prevention and Response Independent Review Committee (SPRIRC), released a report Friday in which it suggested prohibiting gun sales to troops under the age of 25.

The panel recommended barring ammunition sales t0 those under the age of 25 as well.

FOX News reported SPRIRC’s findings, noting that the panel described prohibitions against gun purchases as a “high priority.”

SPRIRC is also pushing for a national database containing serial numbers of all guns sold on DOD property as well as a seven-day waiting period for DOD gun sales.

The panel’s report also calls for “a 4-day waiting period for ammunition purchases on DoD property to follow purchases and receipt of firearms purchased on DoD property.”

Dr. Craig Bryan, one of the SPRIRC panel members, said, “What we learned over the past year was that a significant percentage of on-base suicides involve firearms purchased on base at military exchanges, and so, yes, the motive behind this really is to, in essence, slow down access to firearms,” according to CBS News.

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Discover To Begin Tracking Purchases At Gun Retailers Starting In April

One month ago, credit-card provider Discover Financial Services, issuer of the eponymous credit card, stunned markets when it unveiled in its latest forecast that it expects its 2023 charge off rate to more than double from the 2022 average, hitting a multi-year high and hinting that the US consumer was about to hit a brick wall

Last week, Discover decided to cement that not only would its charge off rate soar but it was about to lose millions of customers after it told Reuters that it would effectively oversee (i.e., spy on) its clients by allowing its network to track purchases at gun retailers come April, making it the first among its peers to publicly give a date for moving ahead with the initiative, which is aimed at helping authorities probe gun-related crimes.

Discover’s announcement came after the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), which decides on the classification of merchant categories used by payment cards, approved in September the launch of a dedicated code for gun retailers.

Proponents of the move, almost exclusively Democratic politicians and gun control activists, say it will allow financial institutions to better assist authorities in investigating crimes involving gun violence in the United States. While the codes will not show specific items purchased, some Republican politicians have spoken out against the move, arguing it could violate the privacy of U.S. citizens lawfully buying guns.

Discover said it will include the new code in its next policy and product update to merchants and payment partners in April.

“We remain focused on continuing to protect and support lawful purchases on our network while protecting the privacy of cardholders,” Discover said in its statement to Reuters.

Curiously, a Discover spokesperson said following the publication of the story that other payment network companies had already decided to implement the new code in April, and that Discover was following their lead. While the Discover spokesperson declined to name those peers, it means that any legal purchase of guns now triggers a whole array of red lights and ringing bells across the government which has taken its crusade against legal gun ownership and purchases to unprecedented levels in recent years, even as gun-related crime in such democrat-controlled cities as Chicago and Baltimore hits record highs every year.

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Federal Law Banning Marijuana Users From Having Firearms Is Unconstitutional, Judge Rules

A federal law barring marijuana users from possessing guns violates the Constitution, a federal judge in Oklahoma ruled.

The decision cites last year’s landmark Supreme Court ruling that affirmed an individual right to carry firearms in public for self-defense.

The ruling came as challenges to gun laws across the nation have escalated since the Supreme Court struck down a restrictive New York firearms law in June 2022. The high court held that there is a constitutional right to carry a gun outside the home, leading states such as New York, New Jersey, California, and Illinois to respond by doubling down on firearms restrictions.

In that precedent, New York State Rifle and Pistol Association v. Bruen, the Supreme Court held that gun restrictions must be deeply rooted in American history if they are to survive constitutional scrutiny.

On Feb. 3, Oklahoma City-based U.S. District Judge Patrick Wyrick, who was appointed by former President Donald Trump, threw out an indictment against Jared Michael Harrison, who was charged with violating the ban.

Harrison was pulled over for a traffic stop on May 20, 2022. Police officers searched the car and found marijuana and a loaded revolver. Officers did not conduct a field sobriety test nor did they seek to draw Harrison’s blood for drug testing. On Aug. 17, 2022, a federal grand jury indicted him for possessing a firearm while being an unlawful user of marijuana.

As of October 2022, 19 states allowed the recreational use of marijuana while 37 states permitted its medical use, but it remains illegal at the federal level. Oklahoma currently allows medical, but not recreational, use of marijuana.

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Guess what a left-wing Fox News personality said AR-15 stands for

Geraldo Rivera, a left-wing Fox News Channel personality, suggested on “The Five” that the “AR” in “AR-15” stands for “automatic rifle” — he gave the answer after Greg Gutfeld asked Rivera what “AR”stands for.

Rivera suggested that owning an AR-15 is about people being macho and claimed that there is not a legitimate purpose for owning one, aside from perhaps being used in sport clubs.

“Those most passionate about ‘gun control’ tend to know the least about guns,” the Daily Caller tweeted when sharing a clip of Rivera.

“Heard the Daily Caller and fellow travelers are ranting about my incorrect definition on-air of ‘AR’ as in AR-15. Whatever. Point is, there is no place (other than sporting clubs and similar skilled settings) for assault rifles. They’re substitute appendages,” Rivera tweeted.

NPR has indicated that the “AR” traces back to, ArmaLite, Inc. and stands for ArmaLite Rifle.

The modern AR-15-style weapons made by gun manufacturers are semi-automatic — the guns have become a significant point of societal debate, with opponents often referring to them as “assault weapons” and calling for them to be banned.

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New ATF rule on pistol stabilizing braces will effectively ban millions of rifles

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives released a new rule on pistol-stabilizing braces that will effectively ban millions of rifles and has Second Amendment supporters up in arms.

The ATF had previously ruled that pistol braces were legal, but a new rule was sought by President Joe Biden as part of his promise to reform gun laws.

The 296-page document outlines several options that gun owners with stabilizing braces have to avoid prosecution.

“Any weapons with ‘stabilizing braces’ or similar attachments that constitute rifles under the NFA must be registered no later than 120 days after date of publication in the Federal Register,” read the rule, “or the short barrel removed and a 16-inch or longer rifle barrel attached to the firearm; or permanently remove and dispose of, or alter, the ‘stabilizing brace’ such that it cannot be reattached; or the firearm is turned in to your local ATF office. Or the firearm is destroyed.”

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